[Sinn Fein]

9 December 1998

Structures need to be set up

Statement from Sinn Fein Assembly Member for Mid Ulster and Chief Negotiator Martin McGuinness MP speaking after his meeting with the British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Mr. McGuinness said:

``I impressed upon Mr. Blair the need for positive movement before the Christmas break. The essential next steps for nationalists are the establishment of ten departments along with the Executive and All-Ireland implementation bodies. Those of us who negotiated and support the Good Friday Agreement expect a wide range of implementation bodies with meaningful and substantive powers, including the Irish Language, Economic Development, European Programmes and Tourism, to be put in place speedily.

``However it must be noted that any agreements on these issues can only take effect when the actual structures laid down in the agreement are set up. So the immediate need for the Executive and the All Ireland ministerial council to be formed is glaringly obvious.''

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