The SDLP response to the UUP/Conservative announcement has been confused. McDonnell says:
Commenting on proposed links between the Ulster Unionist Party and the British Conservative Party, Dr McDonnell said it was the SDLPs vision to create an Ireland where unionists find ever-more comfort in Irishness, without threat to confidence in their Britishness.
With the long-term political progression on this island moving from north-south to an all-Ireland approach it is only natural that people will look to east-west relations.
On the same day, on the same website, one assumes from the same press office Dallat says:
He said, People realise that partition has failed everyone and benefited no-one. Now we get a re-launch of a recipe which last existed in the dark days of Thatcher and the crazy policies of shoot to kill and outrageous claims that we are as British as Finchley.
Do the Tories not realise that they should at least occupy a neutral position? At best they should be preparing their former Unionist friends for a New Ireland which is free from sectarianism and partitionism?
This plan is as original as a fish supper but without the salt and vinegar and certainly containing no nutritional value whatsoever in an ever-changing world of international politics.