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Ó Caoláin describes proposals for northern representation in the Dáil as a first step

31 January, 2007

Sinn Féin Dáil Leader Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD has described Government proposals for representation in the Dáil for MPs from the Six Counties as a long delayed first step which must be built upon in the time ahead. Deputy Ó Caoláin said it was disappointing that the Government proposals fell short of what the Taoiseach and other parties in the Dáil had previously agreed.

Speaking this evening Deputy Ó Caoláin said, "At the time of the Good Friday Agreement Sinn Féin secured agreement from the Irish government that they would bring forward proposals for northern representation in the Dáil. It is welcome that they are now moving on the issue.

"While it is disappointing that the proposals, now before us, fall short of what the Taoiseach had publicly agreed to and what was recommended by the all-Party Oireachtas Committee on the Constitution, we view it as a first step that we will work to see built upon as quickly as possible.

"In the coming days Sinn Féin will put forward recommendations regarding how the government proposals can be implemented.

"Over the last number of years there have been huge strides forward in terms of all-Ireland economic and political development and it is important that this work is advanced. I believe that northern representation in the Dáil, as well as the return of the power-sharing institutions in the north, will help this task immensely." ENDS

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