Alliance Leader meets Hain to demand that pressure is kept on DUP and Sinn Fein

Alliance Leader David Ford met the Secretary of State Peter Hain and demanded that he keep real pressure on Sinn Fein and the DUP to fulfil all their commitments in the St Andrews Agreement. He stated that it was of paramount importance that government does all in its power to ensure Sinn Fein signs up to policing as a matter of urgency. David Ford led an Alliance Party delegation to meet Peter Hain at Stormont Castle yesterday evening.

David Ford stated: “We met the Secretary of State to seek clarification on his understanding of the distance which still exists between Sinn Fein and the DUP.

“We stated that the government must ensure that the two parties fulfil all steps contained within the St Andrews Agreement.

“We have grave concerns about current progress and we demanded that government keep the pressure on the DUP and Sinn Fein, otherwise they must end the farce and wind-up the Assembly.

“Whilst Ian Paisley’s statement on Friday afternoon was a step forward, real problems were caused by his failure to use those words in the Assembly on Friday morning.

“Sinn Fein needs to move on policing very quickly, because for any further progress to be made they must give a full commitment to the rule of law. Friday’s security incident highlighted the urgent need for all parties to fully support the police.

“It would be a nonsense to ask people to vote in March without clear commitments from the DUP to power-sharing and Sinn Fein to policing. If such commitments were not secured, there would be no guarantee that devolved government would return.”


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