[Sinn Fein]

28 May 1996

`Unionist veto has no place at negotiations' - Dodie McGuinness

Sinn Fein's Six County Director of Elections Dodie McGuinness, who is also candidate for West Belfast, has said that if the conflict in Ireland is to be resolved ``then no section of our people can be allowed to exercise a political veto.''

Mr. McGuinness continued: ``There is a huge difference between what passes for consent in the North - which is the Unionist veto being wielded courtesy of the British government - and the agreed consent of the people of Ireland about their future.

``If negotiations are to be meaningful and long-lasting then they must be conducted in a climate where no one section of people receive preferential treatment by virtue of having a veto and where every issue of concern is addressed and resolved to everyone's satisfaction.

``These are the essential and time-proven ingredients of successful conflict resolution. Only in such circumstances can decades of animosity, mistrust and division be addressed, acknowledged and resolved. It is a lesson the British and Unionists would do well to abide by if they are seriously interested in bringing about a permanent peace.''

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