Devolved gov't in Belfast my top priority, says new NI secretary

Devolved gov't in Belfast my top priority, says new NI secretary

After Monday's disciplinary meeting in Belfast, Mrs O'Neill said sorry to the Kingsmill families.

Local politicians have paid tribute to the former Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire following his shock resignation this week due to ill health.

Mrs Foster added: "We have listened to lectures on respect for a whole year and it's very easy to demand respect, but apparently it is not very easy to give respect, and Sinn Fein have not given respect to the victims community here in Northern Ireland and, by definition, the whole wider community in Northern Ireland".

"The DUP and Sinn Féin can no longer abdicate their responsibility and they can no longer be allowed to veto dialogue between all parties".

"Martin McGuinness made clear there can be no denial of the rights of citizens and no return to the status quo". Following the breakdown of talks, the province is on the brink of direct rule by civil servants in London who have already been managing its budget.

Since then talks between Sinn Féin and the DUP have failed to bring about a Stormont Executive. "Not quite how I thought I'd mark my 50th birthday!"

Ms Bradley met students at Belfast's Metropolitan College in the city's regenerated docklands area on her first official engagement in the region.

Asked if she meant to adopt a new approach to the faltering negotiation process, Ms Bradley stressed she was still in learning mode.

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"I am here to learn, I am here to find out, I am here to meet all the leaders, I'm here to look at what needs to be done".

"I hope that we will see a new Secretary of State appointed soon".

"If we are building a new shared future for the people of Northern Ireland, let's build it, but let's move away from the past and move away from the eulogising of terrorists".

The Conservative MP said she was also conscious of the need to deliver a Brexit that worked for everyone in Northern Ireland.

"And I understand the importance of dealing with the past and securing a safe and prosperous future".

"My aim is to work collaboratively to find solutions to those issues that are acceptable to everyone", she said. He said he would not have the "effort, energy and complete focus" needed for his role.

Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley begins her first full day in office today, a year to the day since the collapse of power-sharing at Stormont.

Mrs Bradley also said her family was looking forward to getting to know this "amazing country".

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