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Internal Settlement Fails Again


Breandán Mac Cionnaithéirígí general secretary Breandán Mac Cionnaith has said the breakdown of talks between the establishment parties in the Six Counties and the London and Dublin governments is evidence of the failed nature of the northern state.

The latest crisis talks over the devolution of limited policing and justice powers to Britain’s Stormont administration appear to have become deadlocked over unionist demands for Orange Order marches to be allowed to proceed through nationalist communities.

Mac Cionnaith said: “Attempts at an internal settlement for the Six Counties are doomed to failure. All such attempts have failed in the past and they will do so again. The Six County state is a failed political entity. No amount of cosmetic reform and spin can change that fact.

“Even if the policing and justice powers in question were devolved to Stormont, it would make no meaningful difference to the role of the PSNI and the British legal system in the Six Counties. According to the St Andrews agreement, after devolution the head of the PSNI would still be accountable to the British secretary of state in matters relating to ‘national security’, i.e. the interests of the British state in Ireland.

“As a result, every time the PSNI fired a plastic bullet, used Tasers or CS gas, harassed someone under repressive legislation, raided a home or detained someone without charge for 28 days, a Six County justice minister would be powerless to do anything about it, even if they wanted to.

“The PSNI’s primary job is to protect the British occupation – that job description will not be changing any time soon.”

Mac Cionnaith continued: “The apparent failure of the latest set of crisis talks highlights the reality that a two-state solution is not a feasible option for Irish society.

“The only hope for meaningful progress and change for the Irish people, north and south, lies with a British disengagement from this country’s affairs and the ending of partition. Every failed effort at normalising the Six County state reinforces that fact.”


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