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McGuinness - Pointless pretending DUP have agreed to share power

5 January, 2007


Sinn Féin Chief Negotiator Martin McGuinness MP speaking in Belfast this afternoon said that "It is obvious that Ian Paisley has not agreed with the assessment of the DUP's position set out by British Prime Minister Tony Blair yesterday. While everyone wants the process to continue to move forward it is pointless pretending the DUP has agreed to share power by March 26th or to the timetable for the transfer of powers on policing by May 2008 when they clearly have not.

Mr. McGuinness said:

"Over the last number of days we engaged in a difficult set of discussions with British Prime Minister Tony Blair. This followed the failure of the DUP to respond positively to the Sinn Féin Ard Chomhairle‚s move on policing, which the British described as 'seismic'.

"It is obvious that Ian Paisley has not agreed with the assessment of the DUP's position set out by British Prime Minister Tony Blair yesterday.

"While everyone wants the process to continue to move forward it is pointless pretending the DUP has agreed to share power by March 26th or to the timetable for the transfer of powers on policing by May 2008 when they clearly have not.

"Nationalists and republicans will not accept political, legal or policing institutions which are not representative and democratically and legally accountable.

"The DUP position is not acceptable to nationalists and republicans, many of whom are already sceptical about the DUP‚s commitment to sharing power with Sinn Féin following the March elections.

"Sinn Féin leadership will continue to work to see these issues resolved in the coming days. These are not insurmountable but others including the two governments but in particular the DUP have to play their full part." ENDS

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