N Ireland party signs deals to support UK Conservative gov't

Bruno Cirelli
Giugno 27, 2017

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May finally has her much-needed government majority.

Irish nationalists Sinn Fein said on Monday the money coming in to Northern Ireland from a pact by their pro-British rivals to prop up British Prime Minister Theresa May would not in itself help restore the province's regional administration.

The agreement with the ultra-conservative Northern Irish party was signed in May's Downing Street office after more than two weeks of negotiations following her disastrous showing in the June 8 general election.

DUP leader Arlene Foster said outside Downing Street on Monday that she considers the deal one that is "good for the United Kingdom, for Northern Ireland and allows our nation to move forward", according to the BBC.

The deal is a "confidence and supply agreement", meaning the DUP will guarantee to support the Conservatives only in confidence and budget votes.

It was pointed out to Ms Villiers by LBC presenter James O'Brien pointed out that as the DUP had secured the extra funding, they would be able to present it to voters as their achievement - thereby raising the prospect that the Conservative government has breached its impartiality.

In addition, the deal comes as the Northern Ireland Assembly is suspended due to rifts in the power-sharing arrangement between the DUP and the opposition Sinn Fein party.

Ms May said the deal would not affect her government's approach to Northern Ireland.

The £1bn financial package also includes £200m a year for infrastructure development across Northern Ireland, as well as funding to improve healthcare.

The two parties will not enter into a formal coalition, however.

It also provides 200 million pounds ($255 million) over two years to better Northern Ireland's health service, 100 million pounds ($127 million) for immediate health needs and education.

The agreement was signed by senior Conservative official Gavin Williamson and senior DUP member Jeffrey Donaldson - while May and Foster looked on.

The Tories fell nine seats short of an overall majority after May s decision to call a snap election earlier this month backfired.

Northern Ireland's power sharing agreement - drawn up because of its turbulent recent history - means the Westminster government is supposed to remain neutral in regional affairs.

She explained that $A838m was invested in Glasgow outside of Barnett by politicians in Westminster, adding: 'It's absurd for the SNP to criticise United Kingdom government spending on top of Barnett in Northern Ireland when the exact same thing happens in Scotland'.

Former interlocutors as well as Conservative leaders were opposed to the deal, since it would jeopardise London's neutral position in the conflict in Northern Ireland, as set out in the Good Friday Agreement, which has led to a period of peace.

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