John Downey: In February, Peter Robinson threatened to resign as First Minister after the on-the-runs controversy came to light with his London trial. Photograph: Oli Scarff/Getty Images

It was essential that non-prosecution commitments issued to more than 180 so-called republican on-the-runs cannot now be used to avoid potential futu(...)

UUP leader Mike Nesbitt. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

The DUP and Ulster Unionist Party have supported calls for Kincora Boys’ Home in east Belfast to be included in the investigation of how the British (...)

Curtis Walker throws his band baton beside a loyalist pyre on Lanark Way in Belfast as final preparations are made for the 11th night bonfire. Photograph:  Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Unlike last year, and unlike a number of years before that again, there is some hope that Northern Ireland might emerge from this Twelfth of July r(...)

Northern Ireland First Minister Robinson today with Orange, unionist and loyalist leaders addressing a meeting today at Ballymacarrett Orange hall in east Belfast. Photograph: Gerry Moriarty/The Irish Times

Orange, unionist and loyalist leaders have called on the Northern Secretary Theresa Villiers to hold a commission of inquiry into Saturday’s disputed (...)

A member of the Orange Order wearing a sash and draped in the union flag marches in Belfast. Figures suggest  the order is a weak and declining organisation. Photograph: Reuters

On Monday night, a grandiose Orange Order delegation – Grand Master Edward Stevenson, Deputy Grand Master Rev Alistair Smith and Grand Secretary Drew (...)

Dr
Alasdair McDonnell:
“The situation in Northern Ireland has become volatile and, with threats of a ‘graduated response’ from unionism that will affect government and politics, could get worse.” Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

Sinn Féin and the SDLP have briefed Taoiseach Enda Kenny and new Tánaiste Joan Burton on the political and community tensions triggered by next Satur(...)

 Drew Nelson, grand secretary of the  Orange Lodge: “Whatever the outcome of our deliberations as an institution, I would again underline that any actions must be both lawful and peaceful. Our traditions are dear to us and are only undermined by violence.”  Photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times

Taoiseach Enda Kenny and British prime minister David Cameron have spoken by telephone about the escalating tensions in the North following the Parad(...)

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams said the British and Irish governments should intervene to stabilise the volatile political situation. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Concern is growing in the North that the potential for serious community tensions during next Saturday’s Twelfth of July parades has increased signif(...)

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams speaks to the media at Leinster House in Dublin as senior unionists met to discuss the next phase of their protest against a decision to ban a controversial Orange Order parade from passing a nationalist neighbourhood. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Unionist leaders are being pressed to clarify what they mean by a “graduated response” in protest at a decision to ban an Orange demonstration at a no(...)

 PSNI Chief Constable George Hamilton: “Violence and disorder in relation to the Twelfth is not inevitable.” Photograph: David Young/PA

The political atmosphere in Northern Ireland has deteriorated further after a DUP and Ulster Unionist Party decision to boycott today’s scheduled mee(...)