Taoiseach Bertie Ahern said today that we are now at a 'precious moment' in our history where a shared future lies before us.
He said the conditions for concluding the Northern peace process have never been more promising.
Mr Ahern was speaking at the annual Fianna Fáil Wolfe Tone commemoration in Bodenstown, Co Kildare.
According to the Taoiseach, the feedback on the proposals agreed at St Andrews in Scotland on the North are positive.
He said the leaders of the Northern parties are carrying the burden of history on their shoulders, and that there is a new impatience for progress
The Taoiseach added that seizing the opportunity is now the single greatest duty of political leaders in these islands.
The Taoiseach also paid tribute to British prime minister Tony Blair, who he said has made "an historic contribution to consolidation of peace on the entire island of Ireland".