DUP to travel south for British-Irish Inter-Parliamentary Body

This is a major breakthrough for the work of the British-Irish Inter-Parliamentary Body, which brings together Irish, British and other parliamentarians twice a year to discuss matters of mutual interest in these islands.

The Body has been boycotted by unionists since its inception 16 years ago but the next meeting of the Body in Killarney from April 23-24 will be attended by four leading members of the Democratic Unionist Party. The high-powered DUP delegation will be led by the party’s Deputy Leader, Peter Robinson, and includes three other Westminster MPs and MLAs, Iris Robinson, Nigel Dodds and Jeffrey Donaldson. They are expected to make an hour-long formal presentation to the Body.

The Irish Foreign Affairs Minister, Dermot Ahern TD, will deliver the keynote address on behalf of the Irish Government. The Body’s British co-Chairman is Labour MP and former Northern Ireland Secretary Paul Murphy. The British-Irish Inter-Parliamentary Body was formally established in 1990 as a link between Westminster and Dublin, with 25 British and 25 Irish members drawn from the Upper and Lower Houses of both parliaments. In recent years the membership of the Body has been extended, with representatives from the Welsh Assembly, the Scottish Parliament, the Northern Ireland Assembly and the Isle of Man and Channel Islands.

Gary Kent

  • seabhac siulach

    NEVER NEVER NEVER….I vaguely remember Paisley shouting something similiar to that back in 1985, then stomping around on a Monaghan hillside in Ulster resistance regalia…all so that 16 years later his minions could then take their places in a body set up by the very Anglo-Irish agreement he was busily mouthing off against.

    We could ask what was the last 16 years about, Ian? Was it merely to (in time) become the largest Unionist party and get the missus a new cloak of ermine?
    While it is welcome that Unionists might finally, blickingly be seeing the light of logic, it has to be accepted that this is sickening, opportunistic politics of the worst kind.
    And what’s more, the mass flock of Unionist voters are routinely taken in by this ‘great’ man’s self-serving (and profitable for his family!) actions…laughable. Did any DUP voter last year vote in the general election with the understanding that the DUP would this yeat belatedly be accepting the Anglo-Irish agreement?
    So all that bluster over the Anglo-Irish agreement was just that; bluster…

    So, we must ask, if the ‘great’ man was wrong about the Anglo-Irish agreement, could it be (shocker!) that he is also wrong about ‘NEVER’ going into Stormont with Sinn Fein?
    As we have seen, NEVER as spoken by Paisley does not mean NEVER.
    So much for that man’s ‘integrity’. Hah! We should therefore expect him to be in the assembly by the end of the year…
    Wonder how he will fare in the real world of politics where decisions that may be electorally damaging have to be made, and ceases to inhabit that profitable world of his (for his wife, etc., especially) where he may mouth off at leisure without ever being held to account…
    Should be interesting.