The DUP is maintaining its hardline attitude towards Sinn Féin as British prime minister Tony Blair flies back from holiday to try and rescue his latest power-sharing plan.
Sinn Féin said last night that its planned ard fheis on policing is in doubt due to the DUP's response to the development.
The unionist party has said it will judge republicans on their actions, not their words, before agreeing to share power.
DUP MP David Simpson insisted today that his party would only enter government with Sinn Féin if it proved itself in word and deed as a supporter of the PSNI.
His party colleague Sammy Wilson, meanwhile, is urging Mr Blair to push back the March 26 power-sharing deadline to give Sinn Féin more time "to deal with internal dissent".