“enhance the framework governing parades and related public assemblies”

As Brian said, both the DUP and Sinn Féin are protesting “good faith”, but giving nothing away. And remember, “nothing is agreed until everything is agreed”. So, what’s everything this time? From Gordon Brown and Brian Cowen’s joint statement yesterday [pdf file]

We believe there is now a firm basis for the parties to:
• set an early date for the completion of the final stage of devolution. We agree it would be practicable to set a date in early March for the cross-community vote and the beginning of May for the transfer of powers.
• create a new justice department and define the relationship between the justice minister and the executive on an agreed, strong and sustainable footing;
• benefit from the offer from the British government of £800 million of resources for a new department of justice – money which is only available if agreement is reached by the parties at this time
• enhance the existing framework to deal more effectively with contentious parades, learning lessons from successful local models, and enhance the framework governing parades and related public assemblies in a way that guarantees respect, dialogue, transparency and independence.
We have also put proposals for the executive to move ahead on other outstanding issues from the St Andrews Agreement.

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  • abc123

    “We agree”. Policing and justice an internal UK matter. I thought the DUP didn’t negotiate with foreign Governments over internal UK matters? Or is that another policy change?

  • Cynic2

    Perhaps not so much Pathway to Agreement as Highway to Hell and just how apporpire are those lyrics

    Living easy, living free
    Season ticket on a one-way ride
    Asking nothing, leave me be
    Taking everything in my stride
    Don’t need reason, don’t need rhyme
    Ain’t nothing I would rather do
    Going down, party time
    My friends are gonna be there too
    I’m on the highway to hell
    No stop signs, speed limit

  • [quote]• create a new justice department and define the relationship between the justice minister and the executive on an agreed, strong and sustainable footing;[/quote]

    One would normally expect the new justice department to be much more intelligent than the executive and that suggests that they will be capable of better leadership and policy provision to executing officers in Stormont. Is their considered and elevated view going to create a problem for Ministers who would be objectionable and resist judicious guidance? Would the Assembly see their role as providing leadership and guidance to the new justice department, which would be certainly novel, to say the least, and would they be expecting Police and Justice NOT to be getting involved in such as may be a remote monitoring and mentoring/spooky oversight brief?

    [quote]• benefit from the offer from the British government of £800 million of resources for a new department of justice – money which is only available if agreement is reached by the parties at this time [/quote] ….that is a most injudicious red herring and thuggish blunt instrument from BIFFO and Crash, and they would need to be thoroughly ashamed of themselves for thinking to use it for leverage. Don’t they realise that shekels are never a problem for governments. For goodness sake, they are planning to gift £310 million to the Taleban to try and capture and addict them to capitalism ….. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/afghanistan/article7005445.ece

    [b]Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practise to deceive![/b]

  • Banjaxed

    So far, the OO in its usual arrogant way, has stayed aloof from commenting on the current Hillsbro’ negotioations letting their front-men in the DUP (and , possibly, OUs) do all the donkey work. They have also, in a similar manner, refused to engage with residents’ c’ttees. Perhaps if they were made to pay for the costs of policing each parade, it might help to concentrate minds and remove their smug arrogance. It might also go some way into cutting the numbers of parades (2000 odd, I’m led to believe) and allow the rest of us to get on with our lives rather than sit in road blocks or having to go miles around a diverted route.

    What other parts of the UK are force fed an unwelcome sectarian and coat-trailing culture? It’s time the authorities stopped pandering to this exclusive little sect. We already have a precedent in England where an extreme Islamic organisation’s parade was stopped going through an area where it was clearly not welcomed.

    Is there something in the Orange cuture which assumes a divine right to parade *anywhere* in Northern Ireland despite the wishes of local residents? What is wrong with them that they can’t be satisfied to parade around their own areas?

    In conclusion, I also would place similar restrictions and costs on Republican/Nationalist parades.

    I’ve had parades up to me feckin oxters!