Religious and political leaders meet in Stormont to discuss powersharing

Religious and political leaders meet in Stormont to discuss powersharing
Rev Trevor Gribben, Rev Brian Anderson, Rev William Davison, Right Rev Charles McMullen, Arch Bishop Eamon Martin, and Rev Richard Clarke at Stormont. Photo: Liam McBurney/PA Wire

Leaders of the main churches in Ireland say they have sensed some optimism from the current political talks at Stormont.

They met the main parties and the British and Irish governments earlier at Stormont.

Efforts are underway to restore the powersharing executive which collapsed in January of 2017.

A new talks process was announced last week, almost two and a half years since the devolved executive collapsed.

Archbishop Eamonn Martin, the head of the Catholic Church in Ireland, said the group encouraged the political leaders to take "significantly difficult steps" to find a solution to restore powersharing.

"We found ourselves giving our political leaders permission to take steps towards accommodation, to take those courageous yet perhaps significantly difficult steps to find a way forward," he said.

We also spoke very strongly for the vulnerable in our society who are suffering, who are on the margins.

Parties held another series of round table talks today to try to re-establish powersharing.

The Tánaiste and Northern Secretary also attended.

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