Adams says Government 'too passive’ on peace process

Sinn Féin leader calls on Taoiseach to ‘emulate’ late Albert Reynolds

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has accused the Government of being ‘too passive’ on the peace process.  Photograph: Alan Betson /The Irish Times

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has accused the Government of being ‘too passive’ on the peace process. Photograph: Alan Betson /The Irish Times

Fri, Aug 29, 2014, 01:03

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has accused the Government of being “too passive” on the peace process.

As the 20th anniversary of the 1994 IRA ceasefire approaches, Mr Adams called on Taoiseach Enda Kenny to emulate the example of the late taoiseach Albert Reynolds.

“It’s still an imperfect process. It needs constantly nurtured. An anti-agreement axis has now emerged. There needs to be a pro-agreement axis and the two Governments need to be very, very focused on delivering on the agreement,” he said.

“The Irish Government has been too passive in my view and the Taoiseach could well emulate the example of Albert Reynolds to get involved and press ahead but particularly to keep the British Government to its obligations.”

His comments come after Nancy Soderberg, a senior aide to former US president Bill Clinton, accused unionists and nationalists of an “abysmal abdication of leadership” in an article in The Irish Times.

Mr Adams, speaking in Dublin yesterday, said both the Irish and British Governments should renew their efforts on the North in the autumn.

“My point to the Taoiseach...is that he needs to deal as a co-equal guarantor of these agreements with the British prime minister,” he said.

“This would “liberate progressive elements within Unionism.”

The 1993 Downing Street Declaration, signed by then taoiseach Mr Reynolds and then British prime minister Sir John Major, paved the way for the IRA ceasefire in 1994.

The move was followed by loyalist paramilitary ceasefires.