Quinn expresses concern at Patten reports

Labour Party leader, Ruari Quinn, has called on Northern Secretary, Peter Mandelson, to clarify reports in morning papers that he will shelve Patten reform of the RUC.

Labour Party leader, Ruari Quinn, has called on Northern Secretary, Peter Mandelson, to clarify reports in morning papers that he will shelve Patten reform of the RUC.

Mr Quinn said that nobody was in a position to shelve a crucial element of the Good Friday Agreement.

He said he was surprised by these reports coming as they do before the publication of the Implementation Plan envisaged in the report.

The Labour said: "If we have learnt one thing over the last few years in relation to negotiations in Northern Ireland it is that parties are least likely to move forward when they perceive threats hanging over their heads.

"Police reform is an integral part of an Agreement voted for by the vast majority of people on this island. It is not the possession of the Secretary for State of the British Government. It must proceed, hopefully with the full participation of nationalists and unionists."

He has argued that the next step must be the publication of the Implementation Plan.

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