Region Archives: Northern Ireland

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Has the SDLP kissed and made up?

Conall McDevitt is reporting on his facebook: “I have just been given responsibility for developing SDLP policy on a shared, safe society. Do get in touch if you would like to contribute.” Having been granted dominion over one of his leaders core theme’s does this mean earlier reports of her preference for him as the influential more…

Conservatives considering their options in Northern Ireland?

Interesting news from Jeff Peel on status of the Conservative party staffers in Northern Ireland. Slugger cannot confirm whether it is true or not, but we understand the Conservatives did indeed expend a great deal of time, money and energy on trying to help get Ulster Unionist (as well as their own) candidates elected in more…

After the election: Has unionism the courage to debate a united vision?

Another great piece from Open Unionism, this time from David Vance, fresh from the streets of East Belfast who argues the time has come and gone for a single unionist party. He observes: Seduced by the Stormont Assembly they are relatively disinterested in traditional unionist values and even recoil from that which is branded Conservative. more…

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Award winning Ulster Museum renovation short-listed for Art Fund Prize

No doubt assisted by our own modest support [*ahem* – Ed], the recently renovated Ulster Museum in Belfast, which re-opened in October 2009, has been shortlisted for UK’s largest single arts prize – the £100,000 Art Fund Prize.  From the BBC report. Dr Jim McGreevy of National Museums Northern Ireland, said the museum had attracted “fabulous support from more…

Police attacked at security alert in Lurgan

A short BBC report notes A blast bomb and petrol bombs have been thrown at police dealing with a security alert in Lurgan, County Armagh. A number of other missiles have been thrown at officers at the scene of the alert in Lake Street. There are no reports of any injuries Six police officers suffered minor more…

DUP/Sinn Fein’s 37 day plan for public protest..

Interesting that just as a coalition between the Lib Dems and Conservatives with civil liberties being one of the key issues takes power in Westminster the joint DUP/Sinn Fein committee report on what replaces the current parades commission, is being chewed over in public (the report was delivered during the election campaign period). Eamonn McCann: more…

The ash is back

No-fly zones have been re-imposed over parts of the UK, including Northern Ireland, and some Irish airports are also affected.  The Met Office will be updated its observations of the volcanic ash cloud on a regular basis. Adds The Guardian has more. Including this footage of the culprit, the Eyjafjallajokull volcano, erupting.

Jim Fitzpatrick: “let’s call it local madness for ease”

In his weekly Politics Show dispatch, Jim Fitzpatrick picks up on the new Foreign Secretary William Hague’s comparison between the workings of the voluntary coalition at Westminster and the mandatory one at Stormont. Asked on BBC Radio Four’s Today programme if the arrangement at Downing Street would work something like the one in Stormont Castle with more…

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Reg Empey to step down from leadership

It’s not clear what the last election ever held for Reg Empey. Had he won, he was already committed to stepping down from his ministry and membership of the Assembly. With his intention to resign now clear are now where we would have been regardless of whether he’d won his seat, or not. The big more…

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UTV declare that Martin McGuinness is First Minister!

Niall Ó Donnghaile pointed out earlier tonight that UTV have got a bit ahead of themselves and started to address Martin McGuinness as “First Minister”. In an online news article about the Irish President’s visit to the Balmoral Show, they explained The President of Ireland addressed an audience which included First Minister Martin McGuinness and more…

de Juana Chaos extradition appeal to continue in his absence

Despite having had no contact with their client since he jumped bail in March this year, lawyers acting on behalf of the convicted ETA killer, Jose Ignacio de Juana Chaos, are “continuing with instructions” in the appeal against his extradition to Spain.  Which is nice…  But have they checked his Dublin address yet?

Number of votes the second place candidate lost by in May 2010 Westminster election

Did you get to use your vote this year?

Jonathan reckons that the electoral fortunes of several parties (Sir Reg Empey fights for his life at a meeting of his party’s Executive this Saturday) swung on a very small number of voters in Northern Ireland: 2,721 votes cast out of a total of 673,871 doesn’t seem much.  That’s because it’s not.  In fact, it’s a more…

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Alliance a ‘legitimate target’?

Moving from an oppositional role in the Assembly to taking on the role of Justice Minister ran political risks for the Alliance Party. At the time I flippantly noted David Ford had put himself in the firing line in more way than one. However, his and Alliance’s responsibility for the conditions of Republican prisoners has more…