[Sinn Fein]

24th July 1999

Sinn Fein Ard Chomhairle meet in Dublin

Sinn Fein representative for North Kerry Councillor Martin Ferris speaking following today's meeting of the party's Ard Chomhairle in Dublin.

Mr. Ferris said:

``The Sinn Fein Ard Chomhairle is still meeting and our deliberations will continue for some time yet. The main business of today's meeting is the current state of the peace process.

``No one should underestimate the extent of the crisis that we are in now. Fourteen months after the Good Friday Agreement we still have no executive, no all-Ireland Ministerial Council, no demilitarisation paper from the British government, no human rights or equality agenda.

``In our view this is because the British government has allowed the unionists to obstruct the implementation of the Agreement at every stage. Many republicans and nationalists now believe that the Unionist party leadership do not want to share power.

``The planned review in September has to be seen in this context. Sinn Fein will judge the review on whether or not we believe it can make a difference. We have not yet concluded our deliberations on this matter. But I have to say that there are many who are sceptical and see this as an exercise in providing unionists with another opportunity to try and renegotiate the Good Friday Agreement.

``We will continue our discussions today and it is our intention to hold a press conference next week at which we will give our considered assessment of the current state of the peace process.''ENDS

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