Kenny warns May 'do not put peace agreement at risk'

Sinn Féin's leader Michelle O'Neill has said she is ready to resume negotiations on Monday with the aim of restoring devolved government in Northern Ireland after this "watershed election".

Labour's Yvette Cooper suggested that the Tories' deal with the DUP could put the Northern Ireland peace process in jeopardy.

One thing is for certain, no one expected this scenario even up until yesterday evening.

Asked if the Conservative deal with the DUP would undermine Westminster's impartiality, he told ITV's Peston on Sunday: "Well, not necessarily". The Prime Minister reiterated that the Government's approach and objectives in the forthcoming talks to re-establish the Northern Ireland Executive remained unchanged.

A small political party entirely based in Northern Ireland that has been out of the spotlight for years could emerge as a decisive force in allowing the Conservative Party to form a majority in the House of Commons after Theresa May's disastrous campaign result in the 2017 general election.

James Brokenshire said the current process, which involves the United Kingdom and Irish governments chairing elements of the negotiations and the head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service moderating other discussions, was the "right approach".

"I think change is brought about, certainly in Northern Ireland, by persuasion, by people working together and the best way actually to achieve these is to get the Northern Ireland Assembly back up and running, and I hope that will also be possible".

The party is constantly at loggerheads with its opposition - and curiously, recently, government partner Sinn Fein.

     BOJO Boris described talk of his leadership bid as'tripe
GETTY BOJO Boris described talk of his leadership bid as'tripe

Late last night Downing Street announced that a deal had been struck and then just as quickly a retraction of that statement was issued.

Mrs Foster branded some of the commentary and analysis about her party as "inaccurate and misleading".

"To those locally who are complaining the loudest about our position of influence, I say to them that the time for unreasonable behaviour and unrealistic demands is over".

Meanwhile Taoiseach Enda Kenny has warned Prime Minister Theresa May that the Good Friday Agreement cannot be put at risk.

"It is really for Sinn Fein to decide where they want those powers to lie". The agreement is made up of two inter-related documents, both agreed in Belfast on Good Friday, April 10, 1998.

The institutions collapsed after the late Martin McGuinness quit as deputy first minister in protest at the DUP's handling of the ill-fated renewable heat incentive (RHI) - an eco-scheme that left Stormont facing a £490 million overspend.

Arlene Foster says negotiations are ongoing - she'll meet Prime Minister Theresa May in London on Tuesday for talks.

  • Leroy Wright