Governments to sign treaty on ending NI paramilitary activity
Independent Reporting Commission to help ensure commitments are delivered upon
Historical UFF news conference (above): The British and Irish governments will sign a treaty in Dublin today to establish an Independent Reporting Commission in an effort to end paramilitary activity in the North. File photograph: Paul Faith
The British and Irish governments will sign a treaty in Dublin today to establish an Independent Reporting Commission in an effort to end paramilitary activity in the North.
The new independent scrutiny body, agreed in last November’s Fresh Start Agreement, will have four members and help ensure the Irish and UK governments and the Northern Ireland Executive are held to account and that commitments in the Executive’s plan for tackling paramilitary activity are delivered.
The treaty will be signed at Iveagh House by Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan, and the Northern Ireland Secretary, James Brokenshire.
The commission’s annual reports will be published by the UK and Irish governments, which are both co-guarantors of the 1998 Belfast Agreement, and there is a facility for them to jointly request further reports.
Mr Flanagan said he looked forward to meeting Mr Brokenshire on his first official visit to Dublin for the signing of the agreement, which he described as a “another landmark day for Northern Ireland”.
“In our talks, we will be discussing the crucial work on dealing with the legacy of the past,” he said in a statement.
Mr Flanagan said that he would also reiterate to Mr Brokenshire “the need to address the All-Party Dáil motion on the Dublin Monaghan bombings”.
The motion calls on the British government to allow an independent judge access to all documents it holds relating to the May 17th, 1974, bombings, in which 34 people were killed and 300 injured.