Monday 23 October 2017

McGuinness's willingness to compromise fraught with risk

'A former IRA leader who went as far as Mr McGuinness did was inevitably going to come under suspicion, not just of weakness but of actual betrayal'. Photo: PA
'A former IRA leader who went as far as Mr McGuinness did was inevitably going to come under suspicion, not just of weakness but of actual betrayal'. Photo: PA

Malachi O'Doherty

While the undoubted contribution of Martin McGuinness to the peace process is being celebrated, the fact is that the current political crisis has arisen because that approach had run its course, or he thought it had.

Some voices from unionism have generously acknowledged that Mr McGuinness made big strides towards them. But at the start of this year, Mr McGuinness and the Sinn Féin leadership decided that those efforts had not been reciprocated and that the relationship between Sinn Féin and the DUP had to be renegotiated.

Now that he is dead and his legacy is being widely endorsed, this presents the prospect of Sinn Féin casting around for ways of continuing with his approach.

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