Flanagan urges leaders in North to reflect on decade of devolution before talks

Dublin's Foreign Affairs Minister has urged Northern Ireland's leaders to reflect on the 10th anniversary of devolution ahead of talks to restore government in the region.

Charlie Flanagan said the restoration of devolved power at Stormont on May 8 2007 was an achievement that can be recalled with a sense of satisfaction by all who played a part.

"In the 10 years since restoration, all parties to the peace process have had to work through a number of difficult challenges and testing moments," he said.

"It is all the more important, then, that the cumulative achievement of that decade of devolved and representative government for Northern Ireland be acknowledged.

"Over the last decade, the devolved institutions of the Good Friday Agreement have delivered significant and lasting steps forward for Northern Ireland and its people."

Mr Flanagan said recalling this achievement should encourage all political parties to ensure agreement is reached in the talks aimed at restoring a power-sharing executive set to resume at Stormont next month.

"The Irish Government will continue to play its part, working with the British Government and each of the political parties, to support the formation of an executive that operates on the basis of partnership and equality and delivers good government for all the citizens of Northern Ireland," he added.

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