12 November 1996
Major not moving on central issues
Sinn Fein Ard Chomhairle member Martin McGuinness has accused the British government of allowing the Unionist leaderships to veto and obstruct efforts to construct a credible and effective process of negotiations. He described this as a ``recipe for failure''.
Mr. McGuinness said:
``Gerry Adams and John Hume have been working hard to re-construct the peace process on the basis of a credible and effective negotiating process. This clearly and logically requires the removal of preconditions, an agreed timeframe and confidence building measures by the participants, but especially by Mr. Major's government.
``The biggest obstacle to progress on these issues is the British government, which appears to be placing its short term political life before peace in Ireland by allowing the unionist leaderships to veto and obstruct efforts to construct a credible and effective process of negotiations. This is a recipe for failure.
``For their part the unionist leaderships have made no secret of their desire to prevent proper talks and to lock Sinn Fein out of negotiations. This desire is both the source and motivation of the malicious and damaging leaks which have occurred over the past number of weeks. The British government's apparent endorsement of this position and the floating of new preconditions on Sinn Fein's entry into talks, is evidence of a British government unwilling to take real risks for peace and which prefers to stick with a failed status quo.
``Sinn Fein will remain totally focused on the need to build a genuine and dynamic process of negotiations but the onus on creating the right conditions for a renewed peace process at this time rests squarely with the British government.'' ENDS
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