[Sinn Fein]

31st May 2002

Alliance Party decision welcomed

Sinn Fein Councillor Alex Maskey MLA has welcomed the Alliance Party's announcement that they will back him for the position of Mayor of Belfast. Cllr. Maskey said:

``I welcome today's announcement by the Alliance Party that they will support the Sinn Fein bid for the position of Mayor of Belfast. As a party, Sinn Fein has worked to make this city one in which all citizens feel they belong and are equal.

``Since entering City Hall in 1983 Sinn Fein has had to fight for the right to be heard in the chamber, the right to chair Council Committees, the right to serve on outside bodies and the right to hold the position of Mayor. It is our hope that this decision heralds a new era of equality in City Hall.

``In making this decision the Alliance Party has shown respect for the wishes of the electorate and the ethos of what they signed up to under the Good Friday Agreement.''

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