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Joint Declaration

Volume 405: debated on Wednesday 21 May 2003

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7.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on the Joint Declaration. [113807]

The Joint Declaration and accompanying documents set out the agreed way forward on the implementation of the remaining commitments in the Belfast Agreement, and the restoration of stable and inclusive institutions as envisaged in the Agreement. We shall press ahead with implementing some parts of the Joint Declaration, as the Prime Minister and Taoiseach agreed in Dublin two weeks ago. However, some elements, such as full security normalisation, must await the necessary clarity on an end to paramilitarism.

8.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what elements of the Joint Declaration can be implemented without acts of completion by the IRA. [113808]

It is our intention to press ahead with the implementation of a range of recommendations in the Declaration, including on rights and equality and policing and justice. We also intend to introduce legislation on the establishment of an Independent Monitoring Body, as set out in the Agreement between the British and Irish Governments on Monitoring and Compliance.