ADAMS WARNING ON DUP DEMANDS
The British and Irish governments could put progress in the North at
risk if they divert from what was agreed at the St Andrews talks and
make fresh concessions to the DUP, Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams
The two parties have until November 10 to signal their support for the
plan agreed at St Andrew's and sign up to power-sharing.
If they do, DUP leader Ian Paisley and Sinn Fein chief negotiator
Martin McGuinness will be nominated First and Deputy First Ministers
respectively on November 24.
However, among the problems is the DUP's insistence that Mr McGuinness
pledge his support for the PSNI (formerly RUC) police before he takes
up his position.
Speaking on Irish radio yesterday, Mr Adams said no Sinn Fein ministers
would take such an oath until the party, as a whole, agreed to endorse
the PSNI. He said the PSNI was not currently providing the type of
civil policing envisaged in the Good Friday Agreement.
However, if the British government and other parties to the agreement
fulfilled their promises, then he could "try to bring other members
the party to the position where they would consider (whether) the type
of accountable and partial, civic, de-politicised policing that
citizens require can be produced by the PSNI".
He continued: "But if in the meantime, in an attempt to get Ian Paisley
in, we chase republicans out, or the governments make concessions to
this absurd notion the DUP have that negotiation is a matter of making
demands and then waiting for other people to genuflect before them,
then, you know, we could all be in a bit of a mess.
"I have a sense that the DUP will come into this, but I don't want
have anybody representing any Irish person stuck in institutions which
are strait-jacketed forever because the governments made short-term
On Saturday, DUP deputy leader Peter Robinson cast doubt on whether the
November 24 deadline for appointing the first ministers would be met,
claiming Sinn Fein would "not be ready".
Mr Adams hit back, saying Mr Robinson's remarks were "entirely
"When the DUP put up its entirely bogus demand that Sinn Fein take
'oath of loyalty to the PSNI before the nomination of the First and
Deputy First Ministers designate', many in the Sinn Fein leadership
said this was really only an excuse to forestall those appointments."
The Sinn Fein president said his party was conscious of the
difficulties facing the DUP.
"But Ian Paisley will not overcome these difficulties by creating
ones. It was never going to be easy to bring rejectionist unionists
into a better place. Sinn Fein is not naive on these matters. But we
will persist with this task."