Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Ceisteanna (139)

Peadar Tóibín

Ceist:

139. Deputy Peadar Tóibín asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the number of times the North South Inter-Parliamentary Association has met since it was formed; when the last meeting of the association took place; the matters discussed and achieved by the association; and when the next meeting of the association will take place. [8277/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Foreign)

The operation of the North South Inter-Parliamentary Association is a matter, in this jurisdiction, for the Houses of the Oireachtas.

The establishment of a North South parliamentary forum was envisaged in the Good Friday Agreement and the St. Andrews Agreement. Following an agreement by working groups of both the Oireachtas and the Northern Ireland Assembly on 4 July 2012, the inaugural plenary session of the North South Inter-Parliamentary Association was held in the Seanad Chamber on 12 October 2012. The most recent plenary session of the North South Inter-Parliamentary Association took place on 2 December 2016 in Belfast.

At present, the North South Inter-Parliamentary Association is unable to meet and this will unfortunately remain the case until the Northern Ireland Assembly is fully reconvened.

I am continuing to work with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and the leaders of each of the political parties to get the necessary political process in place to secure an agreement for a functioning Executive and Assembly.

The Government will continue, as co-guarantor of the Good Friday Agreement, to do everything in our power to ensure that all of its institutions can operate fully and effectively.