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PM in Northern Ireland talks ‘progress made’

David Cameron and Enda Kenny, Taoiseach of the Republic of Ireland spoke to the press following all-party talks at Stormont, Northern Ireland.

The Prime Minister said:

There has been progress overnight but a deal is not going to be possible today.

The Taoiseach and I came here because we both want to see real progress in Northern Ireland. We worked together very hard with the parties on a deal that we think represents really good progress.

It would involve comprehensive addressing of the issues of the past, it would involve devolution of parading, it would involve Northern Ireland having the devolution of corporation tax and in addition to that I was prepared to put on the table, real spending power, new spending power for the Northern Ireland executive to sort out some of the issues that it faces. Spending power if everything was agreed, potentially as much as £1billion.

But a deal hasn’t been possible.

What I hope will happen now is that politicians here in Northern Ireland will work together to agree these vital issues about parades, about flags, about the past, about their budget. That if they come to an agreement, then that sort of financial power can be brought to bear but if there isn’t an agreement then that financial fire power isn’t there.

But I think things are better today than they were yesterday and I want to thank the Taoiseach for all his hard work in helping to bring people together and discuss these vital issues.

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