Sinn Féin leader in the North Michelle O Neill MLA has challenged the British Secretary of State James Brokenshire on his assertion today that he will “consider all options” after Easter if talks to form the Northern Executive fail.
Michelle O’Neill said:
“There is only one option which the British Secretary of State is entitled to take and that is to call an election.
“There is no legal basis for any other course of action. And while parties may or may not want an election the fact is if the British Secretary of State brings in new legislation to restore Direct Rule that will be an act of bad faith and a clear breach of an agreement between the Irish and British governments in 2006.
“Sinn Féin has made it clear that all of the outstanding issues can be resolved. There can be no return to the status quo.
“We have no objection to the British Secretary of State leaving some time for that to be done but we are totally opposed and we would look to the Irish government to oppose, any new legislation to bring back Direct Rule.”