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Alliance welcomes announcement of ceasefire monitor

September 12, 2003 12:00 AM

Alliance Leader David Ford has welcomed the Government's acceptance of his party's proposals to appoint a ceasefire monitor, with an announcement on who will hold the position expected from the Secretary of State shortly.

Mr Ford said: "This is an important step towards introducing greater honesty and integrity back into the peace process, and I welcome the Prime Minister's acceptance of our Hillsborough proposals."

"By shining a spotlight onto paramilitary activity, an independent monitor will ensure that truth is no longer sacrificed for political expediency."

Mr Ford also criticised the SDLP for opposing the idea: "Once again the SDLP are at sixes and sevens. This morning Alban Maginness said the IRA's rejection of the plan was 'premature' and the idea was 'worth exploring', but this evening they have swung round to the republican rejectionist view."

"This afternoon must have been a busy one for the SDLP; to explore an issue so central to the peace process and come to the conclusion that the paramilitaries must be given the cover they do not deserve."

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