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Sinn Fein ‘striking balance between unity push and bread-and-butter issues’

Sinn Fein wants to strike a balance between its aspiration for Irish unity and tackling the real life concerns of people, Mary Lou McDonald has said.

The party president insisted the process of planning for unification, through the establishment of an all-island citizens’ assembly, could continue alongside efforts to deal with bread-and-butter issues, such as rocketing living costs and spiralling health service waiting lists.

Mrs McDonald was commenting as she joined senior party colleagues in Belfast to launch Sinn Fein’s manifesto for the forthcoming Assembly election in Northern Ireland.

The document includes a pledge to pay £230 to every household in the region to help mitigate some of the pressure of rising energy bills.

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