Mowlam initiates marching talks

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The Independent Online
The Government yesterday launched a fresh initiative to try to resolve the parades crisis in Northern Ireland - just three weeks before the annual summer marching season gets into full swing.

Mo Mowlam, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, announced that she was to engage in an intensive fresh round of discussions with the Orange Order and the Apprentice Boys, and residents' groups, in a bid to stave off a return to the violence which swept Northern Ireland last summer. She described what happened then as "appalling" and insisted the Government was "determined" to do all it could to avoid a repeat. Everything centres around the Drumcree Orange Order parade scheduled to take place in Portadown, County Armagh, on 6 July - and Ms Mowlam faces the difficult prospect of reconciling the Orangemen's demands that they should march down the nationalist Garvaghy Road and the residents' insistence that they should not.