Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Questions (56)

Finian McGrath

Question:

56. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if he will push for the implementation of the Haass proposals in Northern Ireland; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22319/14]

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Written answers (Question to Foreign)

I met with Dr Haass on 23 May when he visited Dublin after his visit to London on 22 May. We share the view that progress in the Party Leaders Talks is urgently needed. I remain convinced that the best way forward for dealing with important issues such as parades, flag and identity issues and dealing with the past, is the early, successful conclusion of these talks. Maintaining the status quo in relation to these issues is not a feasible or satisfactory option for anyone. I believe that there is a window of opportunity to reach agreement before the summer and I will continue to encourage the NI parties over the coming weeks towards that end.

The Irish and British governments are agreed on the need to make progress within the talks without further delay. I have remained in close contact in this regard with the Secretary of State, Ms Theresa Villiers, who I will meet next on Thursday 29 May when she is scheduled to visit Dublin.