Thu 19th January
The delegation, which included SDLP deputy leader Dolores Kelly MLA, Foyle MP Mark Durkan and South Down MP Margaret Ritchie, discussed the implementation of the Good Friday Agreement, centenary commemorations, the constitutional convention and the current economic challenges facing Ireland (North and South)
Following the meetings, Dr. McDonnell said: “We were pleased to be able to engage with An Taoiseach and Mr Martin on a wide range of issues in a productive manner.
"As part of the SDLP's commitment to be at the heart of all events and decisions affecting the future of the people of Ireland, we principally discussed key events of the next decade and how we can best work with colleagues in the Dublin government to promote the unity and reconciliation which has always formed the core of SDLP policy."This will include the decade of commemorations, the constitutional convention, closer North-South cooperation and Ireland's economic challenges."
Foyle MP Mark Durkan added: “In particular, we pointed the Taoiseach and Micheál Martin to previous position papers from the SDLP which have spelt out the need for democratic nationalism to approach unity in the 21st century while implementing the Good Friday Agreement, and how we protect the key promises and principles of the Agreement for all traditions in the context of unity.
“We also discussed the coming decade of centenary events and the need to address these responsibly and express them honourably.
“Our discussions also covered economic challenges for the island and the need and opportunity for more strategic and coherent North-South co-operation and its collective implementation.
“These exchanges covered the implications of public spending cuts as well as issues in different sectors including banking and infrastructure.”
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