Published: Tue, June 20, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

Irish, British PMs to meet to talk Brexit, Northen Ireland crisis

Irish, British PMs to meet to talk Brexit, Northen Ireland crisis

As he travelled to Belfast to participate in negotiations for the first time, Simon Coveney pledged to "spare no effort" in the process to salvage the crisis-hit institutions at Stormont.

The remarks came after warnings by the nationalist Sinn Fein and SDLP and the cross-community Alliance Party that a deal with the DUP would undermine the Government's attempts to restore the powersharing executive at Stormont.

The Prime Minister has confirmed she will publish the details of any deal that is reached between her party and the DUP, as she insisted talks will not be allowed to undermine the Good Friday Agreement.

"Among other things, we will discuss Northern Ireland and the need to re-establish devolved Government, and Brexit, focusing on how we can avoid any adverse impact on the rights and freedoms of our citizens, on trade and the economy". We will speak with Sinn Fein again on Monday to try and get that set up as quickly as possible, because devolution works and works for everybody in Northern Ireland.

"Weekend reports regarding the precarious position of the British Prime Minister must not stall or delay getting the institutions back up and running. We are talking about a confidence and supply agreement with them", she said.

The UK Government has warned that direct rule from London could be reimposed if the local parties fail to reach an agreement before the June 29 deadline.

DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds has said there is no deadline for a deal between his party and the Tories, who are trying to establish a Westminster government without a majority.

"Continued refusal by the DUP and British government to accept these fundamental positions will create only one outcome: a future of permanent political instability", he said.

Speaking in Downing Street alongside Mr Varadka, Mrs May dismissed these concerns as she claimed her government "remains absolutely steadfast" in its commitment to upholding the Good Friday Agreement.

Leading Eurosceptic MPs have told Britain's Sunday Telegraph they are prepared to mount an immediate leadership challenge if May deviates from her original plan.

Conservative Party sources say May wants to show her government is up and running but her loss of authority in last week's election will make it harder to handle a hectic agenda - Brexit talks with the European Union, tackling a slowing economy, a political crisis in Ireland, and a devastating fire in London. "So I'm afraid to say there is no good will towards her". Then women would no longer have to travel to England for an abortion and they and their medical carers would no longer be treated as criminals.

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