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Deal on as first grand coalition takes shape

FF, FG , Greens to put together deal SF claims vote for 'change' ignored

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Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin (Niall Carson/PA)

Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin (Niall Carson/PA)

Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin (Niall Carson/PA)

The shape of the first grand coalition in the history of the State between Fianna Fail and Fine Gael was emerging last night.

Talks between the two parties, led by Micheal Martin and Leo Varadkar, will get under way this week, with Fianna Fail's Michael McGrath and Dara Calleary mandated to talk to equivalent senior representatives of Fine Gael.

The intention of the two old parties, which emerged from the Civil War almost 100 years ago, is to embrace the Green Party in a three-hand coalition to be presented to the public as "change" while also holding the centre ground of politics in Ireland.