Monday 20 February 2017

Talks aimed at resolving Stormont crisis 'to begin as early as next week'

Published 03/09/2015 | 17:29

Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Theresa Villiers
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Theresa Villiers

Fresh talks aimed at resolving the political crisis surrounding the re-emergence of the Provisional IRA could begin as early as next week, it has emerged.

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Taoiseach Enda Kenny and British Prime Minister David Cameron have announced talks involving the North’s political leaders in a bid to avert a collapse of the power-sharing executive.

The talks should be 'short, focused and intensive', Mr Kenny said in a statement.

The Taoiseach and Mr Cameron have asked Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan and Secretary of State to Northern Ireland Theresa Villiers to convene the talks next week.

“In the light of the urgency of the situation, the Prime Minister and I have agreed that Secretary of State Villiers and Minister Flanagan should, as appropriate within the strands of the Good Friday Agreement, convene immediate talks next week with the political parties who subscribed to the Stormont House Agreement,” Mr Kenny said this evening.

“We envisage that this process of talks should be short, focused and intensive and deal with full implementation of the Stormont House Agreement as well as the trust and confidence issues arising from the legacy of paramilitarism.

“If the sustainability of the devolved institutions is to be ensured, it is absolutely critical that these talks are advanced with a sense of urgency and that all of the parties constructively seize this opportunity,” he added. 

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