Tánaiste assures Richard Haass of Irish Government support for Northern Ireland talks25 September 2013
Following the meeting in New York, the Tánaiste said:
“I was very glad to hear first hand from Dr Haass his considered view on the talks process which began last week in Belfast, and to get his assessment of the way forward. Having met the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland earlier this week I stressed that both governments are determined to maintain and build on all the hard-won progress which has been achieved in Northern Ireland. Dr Haass and his team have the full support of the Irish government in the task that lies ahead"
Referring to Dr Haass’ first round of engagements last week, the Tánaiste noted the strong potential of civil society to play a positive role in Northern Ireland.
“I was particularly glad to hear of the wide process of consultation undertaken by Dr Haass and Dr Meghan O’Sullivan in Belfast last week. There is a broad spectrum of people who are not part of the political process, and their voices need to be heard – we need to find ways of ensuring civil society is part of the solution”
Both Dr Haass and Dr O’Sullivan will return to Ireland in October for their next round of engagements with the parties and with civil society.
“I look forward to close contact with Dr Haass and his team over the next few months, and I hope to welcome him to Dublin on his next trip to Ireland”
The Tánaiste is in New York to attend the United Nations' General Assembly.