Major urged to regain Ulster initiative

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THE GOVERNMENT came under renewed pressure to proceed with the Ulster peace process after the failure of the Sinn Fein annual conference to offer a clear signal about the Downing Street Declaration, write Colin Brown and David McKittrick.

Some senior Tory MPs urged John Major to seize back the initiative from Sinn Fein and the IRA. But the Irish and British governments were resisting the pressure.

Whitehall sources said yesterday that the Government was unlikely to take any urgent action and would resist demands to publish its plans for devolved power in Ulster.

Sinn Fein's weekend conference refused to accept or reject the declaration, indicating it would prefer to operate on the basis of the agreement reached last year by its president, Gerry Adams, and the SDLP leader, John Hulme.