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Belfast Agreement could be on table in new DUP strategy

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14.09.2021

Three years ago, in the midst of the last deadlock at Stormont, ostensibly over unionist opposition to an Irish Language Act, Peter Robinson delivered the George Mitchell lecture at Queen’s University.

He said a few things which are of interest in the current crisis over the Northern Ireland Protocol.

One of them was that party leaders at Stormont, when that dispute was resolved, should make a solemn pledge never again to collapse the Executive by resigning. Had he got his way, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson would not have been able to threaten last week to pull out his ministers.

Better still, said Robinson, would be an agreement which removed that possible sanction and allowed the business of the Executive to continue after such a walk-out.

This seemed such common sense at the time that it did not feature as the main angle on the reportage of Robinson’s speech.

But given that Peter Robinson has said that he is close to Jeffrey Donaldson, that he contributes to the planning of his current strategy, it is worth pointing out that that strategy appears to be entirely at odds with the aspiration he declared at the Queen’s lecture.

Donaldson is committing himself to bringing down the Executive and forcing an election. This at a time when we have a Health Minister who wants to proceed with major reforms and a Prime Minister in London who has just decided to raise National Insurance to pay for the........

© Belfast Telegraph


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