[Sinn Fein]

11 November 2002

Queen's Speech - Litmus Test

Sinn Fein Chief Negotiator Martin McGuinness has said that `Wednesday's Queen's Speech will be a litmus test of Tony Blair's pledge to implement the British government's Good Friday Agreement commitments on Policing'.

Mr McGuinness said: ``One year after the name change from the RUC to the PSNI the police force remains a 100% unionist force dominated by Special Branch and MI5. There is no plan to change this.

``In recent weeks the British Prime Minister has twice admitted that he has not implemented the Agreement in full and has called for acts of completion to achieve this. In terms of policing this means the full implementation of the Patten proposals and the creation of the new beginning to policing demanded by the Agreement.

``The legislative amendments promised at Weston Park will not achieve this. The British government has accepted that these proposals fall short of Patten. An accountable and acceptable policing service is central to the success of the Peace Process.

``The Queen's Speech will demonstrate whether the British government intends to implement Patten in full. That is the litmus test of their commitment to acts of completion.''

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