DUP lodges by-election papers

 

The DUP candidate in the Westminster by-election in South Antrim, the Rev William McCrea, has said he is the only unionist who can win the seat. He was speaking as he lodged his nomination papers for next month's election.

Mr McCrea challenged the UUP candidate, Mr David Burnside, to state clearly his position on the Belfast Agreement.

Mr McCrea turned down an invitation to take part in a public debate with the Sinn Fein candidate, Mr Martin Meehan. He said he had been consistent in opposing the party.

The seat was held by Mr Clifford Forsythe of the UUP, who died in April. He had a majority of 16,611 at the last election. However, the DUP did not contest the seat then.

This time, the anti-agreement Northern Ireland Unionist Party is running as well as the DUP. Mr McCrea said that while he would not ask the NIUP to stand aside, it should "think of the good of the country". Alliance and the SDLP are also contesting the seat.