Multi-party talks in Belfast fail to resolve issues with Northern Ireland peace process
The deal-by-Christmas target was not met
Overnight talks at the Stormont Hotel, Belfast, have failed to resolve peace process issues in Northern Ireland.
Divisions that triggered widespread rioting in Northern Ireland this year remained after seven hours of negotiations that ended early on Tuesday morning.
Richard Haas, the director of New York-based Council on Foreign Relations and former Northern Ireland envoy for US President George W Bush, led the talks involving Stormont's five Executive parties.
It was hoped that a compromise would be made by Christmas on areas including: parade routes, the use of British and Irish flags and emblems, and remembering Northern Ireland’s dead from the decade’s long conflict.
After he emerged from the meeting, Dr Haass said: “I am not in the business of doing post mortems here because the patient is still alive.”
He added that he and co-chair Dr Meghan O'Sullivan, a US foreign affairs expert, will consider returning before the New Year if they are convinced a deal is still possible.
The parties will be sent questions from the US, from which Dr Haas and Dr O’Sullivan will produce the fifth set of draft proposals.
Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary Ivan Lewis said: “The lack of an agreement before Christmas is clearly disappointing."
He added:“The priority now is for all Northern Ireland's political leaders to demonstrate their continued commitment to this process by asking Richard Haass and Meghan O'Sullivan to return at the earliest opportunity."
“The Haass talks offer the best hope for dealing with contentious issues such as the past, parades and flags, which continue to be obstacles to the development of a shared future for Northern Ireland," he said.
- 1 Scarlett Johansson new band 'already hit with legal complaint' from another The Singles
- 2 Husband and wife die holding hands within hours of each other after 67 years of marriage
- 3 What color is The Dress, white and gold or blue and black? An eyewitness gives a definitive answer
- 4 The remarkable archaeological underwater discovery that could open up a new chapter in the study of European and British prehistory
- 5 'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Husband and wife die holding hands within hours of each other after 67 years of marriage
Mohammed Emwazi: Nine things we know about Isis militant 'Jihadi John'
What color is The Dress, white and gold or blue and black? An eyewitness gives a definitive answer
'Jihadi John': Mohammed Emwazi – from British computer programmer to Isis executioner
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Oscars 2015: Birdman beats Boyhood as Eddie Redmayne and Patricia Arquette win big - as it happened
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
Half of Ukip voters say they are prejudiced against people of other races
'Cash for access' scandal: Sir Malcolm Rifkind says 'unrealistic' for MPs to live on £67,000 salary
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
Aqsa Mahmood branded a 'disgrace' by her parents after claims she recruited three UK girls flying to Middle East
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Creative Front-End Developer - Claph...
£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The role in this successful eco...
£28000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: QA Tester - London - £30,000 QA Tes...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Linux Systems Administrator ...