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Tory alliance with DUP puts Good Friday deal 'at risk'

12 Juin 2017

Irish Arts Minister Heather Humphreys said that DUP leader Foster had told her at an event on Sunday that she favours a different approach to Brexit.

Speaking in Dublin this morning Mr Varadkar stressed the importance of Governments in Dublin and in London being aware of their obligations under the Belfast Agreement.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has vowed to try to bring down the government by defeating Mrs May in parliament, insisting: "I can still be prime minister".

"It's sunny, optimistic campaigners like [former US President] Ronald Reagan that win elections, offering an exciting future", he said.

The issue is particularly relevant at the moment, as talks to save the crisis-hit powersharing institutions at Stormont are due to resume on Monday.

Northern Ireland has been without an Assembly and Executive for the past three months, following the collapse of power-sharing over a bitter row between the DUP and Sinn Féin.

Earlier, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland James Brokenshire said the North faces direct rule from Westminster if the Stormont parties can not reach a powersharing agreement by June 29th.

The talks were paused over the General Election campaign.

However, a major question mark now hangs over the talks as a result of developments at Westminster.

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Noting that the Irish Government wants a speedy resolution to the impasses, Mr Kenny expressed "concern that nothing should happen to put the Good Friday Agreement at risk and the challenge that this agreement will bring".

"I do have a sense that the landscape does change somewhat as a result of the British election", Varadkar, who is expected to be voted in as prime minister on Wednesday, told reporters.

A number of deadlines to reach an agreement have already fallen by the wayside since March's snap Assembly poll, which was triggered by the implosion of the last DUP/Sinn Fein-led administration over a dispute about a botched green energy scheme.

If no executive is formed, James Brokenshire has warned that Northern Ireland may face direct rule.

The dispute has prompted renewed calls for an independent mediator from outside the United Kingdom and Ireland to be appointed.

Mr Brokenshire said there would not be another extension.

The Secretary of State said the government remained "four square" behind the Good Friday accord.

"I think that remains absolutely the right way to approach this and let's not forget we only have until the 29th June, so let's actually focus on the issues at hand rather than process, let's actually focus on getting people together for the best interests of Northern Ireland - that is what we are focused upon in supporting that work and supporting that effort because that is really how we will take Northern Ireland forward".

Tory alliance with DUP puts Good Friday deal 'at risk'