Transfer of policing and justice powers confirmed
Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Taoiseach Brian Cowen were today launching a deal to save Northern Ireland's power-sharing government - confirming it will take on policing and justice powers from April 12.
The deal between the Democratic Unionist Party and Sinn Fein includes new plans on overseeing parades.
The deal comes after nearly two weeks of round-the-clock negotiations and brings an end to fears that the power-sharing government could have collapsed on the policing, justice and parades stand-off.
A six-member working group is to be established to deal with controversial loyal order parades.
Its work will begin immediately and will be completed within three weeks.
The deal envisages local people providing local solutions which respect the rights of those who parade as well as nationalist residents.
Mr Brown praised the settlement.
He said: "The achievements have been as great as they are inspirational.
"This moment and this agreement belongs to the people of Northern Ireland, all of the people, and now more than ever before so does their future."
Mr Brown said: "This is the last chapter of a long and troubled story and the beginning of a new chapter after decades of violence, years of talks, weeks of stalemate."
He predicted that the settlement would help build a lasting peace.
Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson welcomed the deal and said: "There are some who will play politics with this agreement but the real focus in the months to come must be on building an administration at Stormont that our whole community identifies with and supports."
Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said that as an Irish republican he wanted to see a united Ireland but recognised that unionists preferred to maintain links with Britain.
He insisted both communities could and should live together in mutual respect.
"We need to make life better for our children and grandchildren," he said.
"That is what this agreement must mean in practice."
Mr Cowen said today's deal laid the foundations for a new future.
He said: "That better future must be built on mutual respect for people of different traditions, equality and tolerance and respect for each other's political aspirations and cultural expressions and inheritance."
- 1 I was a Woman Against Feminism too
- 2 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 3 The Tory donor whose firm is one of Britain’s biggest tax avoiders - with HMRC's blessing
- 4 John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
Peaches Geldof cause of death: Socialite had taken fatal dose of heroin after years of addiction, inquest concludes
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned
Peaches Geldof: Her final day – and her fatal decision
Israel-Gaza conflict: Israel may have committed war crimes, says UN human rights chief
John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
£30000 - £38500 Per Annum + 25 days holiday, pension, subsidised restaurant: C...
£34000 - £37000 Per Annum + excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Lt...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + Pension, Holiday, Flexi-time: Progressive Recruitm...
£280 - £320 per day: Progressive Recruitment: C#, WinForms, Desktop Developmen...