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From: The Socialist issue 480, 29 March 2007: Council workers fight pay cut scandal

Search site for keywords: Ireland - Northern Ireland - Sinn Fein

Northern Ireland

Will the new agreement last?

THE MEDIA had pictures on 26 March of 'old enemies' Ian Paisley of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and Gerry Adams of Sinn Fein reaching an agreement to return power sharing to the Northern Ireland Assembly from 8 May.

The agreement was not friendly enough to allow them to shake hands. Paisley, Adams and the rest of the politicians had their minds concentrated, however, by the threat to suspend the Assembly (and their parliamentary incomes) if no agreement was reached before the 26 March deadline.

Few people have any hope of long-term success for this Assembly. The elections in March reflected the present sectarian divides of Northern Irish society. The coalition which may emerge after 8 May would be dominated by Paisley as first minister and Martin McGuiness of Sinn Fein as deputy.

An article in a future issue of the socialist will take up such questions as: Will the agreement last? Will there be splits on issues such as policing? What kind of social policy will this Assembly come up with - will it be more of the right-wing policies of cuts and privatisation that the DUP, Sinn Fein and other capitalist parties have eagerly embraced?

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