Mary Lou McDonald:  said she feared Northern Ireland was entering a period of “drift” and “entrenchment”. Photograph: Paul Faith/AFP/Getty Images

SF asks Labour to table legislation in Westminster allowing same-sex marriage in North

Traditional Unionist Voice leader Jim Allister: went head-to-head with former Alliance minister Dr Stephen Farry on the Stephen Nolan Show. Photograph:  Pacemaker

Jim Allister leads charge to spook unionists about Irish language Act on BBC Radio Ulster

Northern Secretary Karen Bradley. Photograph: Michael Cooper

Northern Secretary says ‘a state of limbo’ cannot go on – is direct rule on the horizon?

Sinn Féin’s Northern Ireland leader Michelle O’Neill and DUP leader Arlene Foster. Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire

Both parties meeting Theresa May to see if talks can be resurrected

Sinn Féin’s vice-president Michelle O’Neill,  president Mary Lou McDonald and party negotiator Conor Murphy at a press conference at Parliament Buildings in Stormont in Belfast on Thursday. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Dublin calls for a cooling-off period as Sinn Féin and the DUP continue to clash

Sinn Féin vice-president Michelle O’Neill and the party’s  president, Mary Lou McDonald,  at a press conference in Parliament Buildings in Stormont, Belfast, on Thursday. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Sinn Féin leader to give draft agreement with DUP to British and Irish governments

Sinn Féin vice-president Michelle O’Neill and the party’s  president, Mary Lou McDonald, at Parliament Buildings in Stormont, Belfast, on Thursday. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Number of Conradh na Gaeilge and Pobal contributions did not assist in persuading unionists not to fear the language

 Michelle O’Neill:  “We had reached an accommodation with the leadership of the DUP. The DUP failed to close the deal. They have now collapsed this process”

Proposed agreement to restore Stormont crashes over Irish language Act

Sinn Féin’s vice-president Michelle O’Neill  at Parliament Buildings in Stormont in Belfast on Wednesday. She insisted her party “had an accommodation on all the issues” with the DUP. Photograph: Michael Cooper/PA Wire

Despite fudge and compomise, Foster could not sell language element to her own party

John Robb pictured in the Dáil on February 14th, 1985. Photograph: Jack McManus/The Irish Times

President Higgins praises the surgeon’s ‘deep humanity’ following his death on Tuesday

Simon Coveney: he said he had spoken with Northern Secretary Karen Bradley, and would remain in close contact

Failure of two parties to agree restoration of government ‘bitterly disappointing’

Speaking following the collapse of the DUP-Sinn Féin talks, DUP leader Arlene Foster said it was now incumbent on the British government to set a budget and start making policy decisions about schools, hospitals and infrastructure.

Mutual recriminations as latest bout of DUP-Sinn Féin negotiations end in failure

Jim Allister said that, when asked a question in Irish, Mary Lou McDonald and Michelle O’Neill “looked like rabbits in the headlights”. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

Jim Allister taunts that Mary Lou McDonald and Michelle O’Neill could not answer TG4

The British and Irish governments are unsure whether this DUP anxiety over the Irish language could jeopardise the prospective agreement. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

SF urges Arlene Foster to ignore those hoping to wreck prospect of Stormont deal

Raymond Johnston who was shot dead in West Belfast on Tuesday night. Photograph: Pacemaker

Raymond Johnston was answering door in West Belfast when he was shot

DUP leader Arlene Foster  at a press conference at Stormont,  February 12th. Photograph:   Charles McQuillan/Getty

Greatest pressure is on Arlene Foster to keep her party members from being spooked

British prime minister Theresa May holds a press conference at Stormont House on Monday. “I have been urging the parties to make one final push for the sake of the people of Northern Ireland,” she said. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Deal to reinstate power-sharing in Northern Ireland remains elusive but close

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney speaking outside Stormont House in Belfast, following a bilateral meeting with British prime minister Theresa May. Photograph:  Niall Carson/PA Wire

SF said agreement is close while DUP indicated good progress had been made at talks

Parliament Buildings in Stormont. Photograph: Paul Faith/PA

Rows over the Irish language and the ‘cash for ash’ scheme stoked the continuing impasse

Theresa May and Leo Varadkar: sources said it was unlikely the two leaders would attend  negotiations unless they had relative certainty a deal between the DUP and Sinn Féin was imminent.  Photograph: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images

DUP and Sinn Féin set to sign off on deal to restore institutions

Sinn Féin Deputy  Pearse Doherty (left), new president Mary Lou McDonald, new deputy president Michelle O’Neill and Conor Murphy MLA celebrating  at  the RDS on Saturday. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Of the McDonald-O’Neill link, the Dublin woman appears to be the dominant partner

Well-placed talks sources said good progress was achieved after a week of high-level DUP-Sinn Féin negotiations at Stormont. DUP leader Arlene Foster is pictued. Photograph: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images

Guarded optimism at Stormont agreement to restore powersharing can be reached

Senior DUP and Sinn Féin sources said intensive talks were continuing at Stormont but that “significant gaps” remained between the two parties. Photograph: Paul Faith/AFP/Getty Images

‘Significant gaps’ remain between DUP and Sinn Féin, party sources say

The complainant agreed that when Rory Harrison (pictured) accompanied her home in the taxi that he comforted her, that at her house he checked with her that there was someone at home and gave her a hug before getting back into the taxi. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.

Rory Harrison is charged with perverting course of justice and withholding information

Stuart Olding (left) and Paddy Jackson arrive at Belfast Crown Court. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA

Woman also told trial the alleged assault by Ireland rugby players lasted ‘an eternity’

Alex Maskey: he said the North was a “unionist-dominated apartheid state, founded on religious and civil discrimination, and which denied citizens fundamental rights such as the right to vote”

DUP calls on Sinn Féin leadership to take action against party Assembly member

Northern Secretary Karen Bradley indicated good progress had been made in discussions. Photograph: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images

Coveney says prize of restored Executive and Assembly worth “stretching for”

Rugby players Paddy Jackson (left) and Stuart Olding deny the charges against them. Photograph: PA

Student claims rugby player ‘leant forward’ to kiss her

A picture from last week showing rugby players Ian Henderson (left) and Rory Best outside Belfast Magistrate’s Court. Court was told Mr Best attended the hearing because he was instructed to be present by lawyers involved in the case. Photograph: Pacemaker

Court told Best attended hearing because he was ‘directed to be here by senior counsel’

Stuart Olding arrives at Belfast Crown Court on Thursday. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

21-year-old faces first day of cross-examination at Jackson and Olding rape trial

Michael Cullen (33) had been missing since January 9th.

Michael Cullen’s brother thanks everyone who assisted in the search

Ireland and Ulster rugby player Paddy Jackson arrives at Belfast Crown Court on Tuesday.  Photograph:  Liam McBurney/PA Wire

Court hears woman told Ireland rugby player to stop when he tried to undo her trousers

Ireland rugby player Paddy Jackson arriving at Laganside Crown Court in Belfast. Photograph: Paul Faith/Getty Images

Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding are accused of sexually assaulting a student (19)

Rory Harrison (25) from Manse Road, Belfast, is charged with perverting the course of justice and withholding information. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters.

Man who accompanied alleged victim home in taxi thought she might have been ‘star struck with Paddy Jackson’ at party

Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding arriving in court in Belfast. The rugby players deny the charges against them. Photograph: PA

Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding accused of engaging in non-consensual sex with 19-year-old student

The changes are proposed as part of a wider plan to reduce the number of MPs in the House of Commons from 650 to 600. Photograph: Getty Images

If implemented number of Assembly members would be cut from 90 to 85

Ulster and Ireland rugby player Paddy Jackson arrives at Laganside Court in Belfast on Monday. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters.

Ulster and Ireland rugby players face jury in Belfast over June 2016 incident

 Emma Rogan, daughter of murdered man Adrian Rogan, speaks on behalf of  Loughinisland massacre relatives at Belfast High Court this month. File photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Unionist politicians describe Mr Justice Bernard McCloskey’s move as troubling

Micheál Martin has proposed that even after the UK quits the European Union that Northern Ireland should continue to have representation in the European Parliament. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

‘Why would people object to Northern Ireland continuing to have representation ?’

Seamus Mallon: he compared the politics of the DUP and Sinn Féin now to how loyalist paramilitaries and the IRA brought down the Sunning dale power-sharing administration of 1974

‘John Hume is a politician who saw the big picture,’ says Micheál Martin

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said people in the North should be afforded the same rights as citizens of the Republic and the rest of the UK. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

Simon Coveney and Karen Bradley to hold meetings with North’s five main parties

The North-South electricity interconnector has been delayed for several years due to opposition to scores of pylons being erected. Photograph: Christian Hartmann/Reuters.

Northern Ireland inquiry finds ‘urgent and compelling need’ for £200 million project

Óglaigh na hÉireann was formed in 2009 after it splintered from the Real IRA. It was led by the recently imprisoned republican Seamus McGrane. Photograph: Press Eye

Óglaigh na hÉireann announces it is suspending ‘all armed actions against British state’

John Hume speaking to the press at the conclusion of the talks in Stormont in, April 1998. Photograph: Alan Betson

Digital resource features posters, documents and articles relating to 1990s

Less than a third of current PSNI officers are from a Catholic background. Photograph: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker

Recruits still taught to check under their cars for explosive devices

PSNI constable Ronan Kerr’s hat rests on his coffin at his funeral in 2011 after he was targeted and killed by dissidents. File photograph: Paul Faith/PA Wire

Parties respond to new data showing a nationalist resistance to careers in policing

The image published by artist Brian John Spencer.

Alliance leader criticises unionist politicians who retweeted the image

The site of  former Magdalene laundry in Donnybrook, Dublin 4.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Academics will interview those with direct experience of institutions

Sinn Féin MP Barry McElduff: posted a video on Twitter featuring him with a loaf of Kingsmill bread on his head. Photograph: Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press

Arlene Foster says Sinn Féin’s ‘eulogising’ of IRA is working against reconciliation

Karen Bradley with students at Belfast Metropolitan College in the Titanic Quarter during her first visit to Northern Ireland. Photograph: Liam McBurney/PA

Tory MP on her first day in Northern Ireland says she is ‘here to learn’

Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Karen Bradley: she and Minister for Foreign Affairs  Simon Coveney are expected to meet shortly.  Photograph: Peter Nicholls/Reuters

Coveney and Northern Secretary Bradley expected to meet soon to consider deadlock

The second man arrested over the murder of Denis Donaldson has been released by gardaí. Pictured are Martin McGuinness, Denis Donaldson and Gerry Adams at Stormont in 2005. Photograph: PA

Gardaí say file to be prepared for Director of Public Prosecutions

Leaders of Sinn Féin Michelle O’Neill and the Democratic Unionist Party  Arlene Foster: work is glacial because of the absence of ministers to take key executive decisions. Photograph: Carl Court/Getty Images

A year after Northern Executive collapse voters paralysed with anti-politics ennui

Karen Bradley leaves 10 Downing Street on Monday. In her first statement as Northern Secretary, Ms Bradley said restoring the Executive was her top priority.  Photograph: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images

New Northern Secretary Karen Bradley will need time to work her way into new brief

James Brokenshire: Tánaiste Simon Coveney contacted  him from Cairo  to “wish him well, and to thank him on behalf of myself and the Irish Government”

Tánaiste praises ‘understated’ work of Northern Secretary who has stood down for lung surgery

 Martin McGuinness, Denis Donaldson and Gerry Adams at Stormont in 2005. Photograph: PA

Second man remains in custody at Letterkenny Garda station

The bullet-riddled minibus near Kingsmill in  south Armagh where 10 Protestant workmen were shot dead by the IRA in 1976. File photograph:   PA Wire

Ballistic studies found guns used in the south Armagh attack were linked to 37 murders

Martin McGuinness, Denis Donaldson and President Gerry Adams on December 9th, 2005. Photograph:  Paul Faith /PA

Senior Sinn Féin and IRA figure had been a British agent for 20 years

West Tyrone MP Barry McElduff leaving Sinn Féin’s headquarters on the Falls Road in Belfast following his suspension from all party activity for three months. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA

Video posted by West Tyrone MP on anniversary of Kingsmill massacre was ‘ill-judged’

Calls have been made for Sinn Féin MP Barry McElduff to resign after he posted a video on social media that has been interpreted as an insult to victims of the Kingsmill massacre.

Sinn Féin MP’s posting of video with Kingsmill bread loaf on his head ‘absolutely disgusting’

 Northern Ireland’s Health and Social Care Board said on Thursday that between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day, 15,626 patients were treated at hospital accident and emergency departments. File photograph: Getty Images

Medical staff despairing at North’s health crisis, says director of college of nursing

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams: “The fact is the DUP is betraying the people of the North and the clear vote against Brexit.” Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Sinn Féin president wants 20th anniversary of Belfast Agreement to be ‘positive point’ in Irish history

 Homelessness  in  Belfast city centre. The charity Depaul has 156 hostel beds in Belfast, Derry and Dungannon, including 31 family units. Photograph:  Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press

‘I am in good shape compared to the way I was,’ says former Belfast rough sleeper

DUP leader Arlene Foster said London should move to appoint direct-rule ministers in Northern Ireland if a final attempt at brokering a deal to restore devolution failed. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Sinn Féin’s Michelle O’Neill accuses DUP of blocking progressive politics

Maurice Hayes: He had a great love and knowledge of literature, and with a photographic memory could quote his favourite poets and writers

Maurice Hayes obituary: Born July 8th, 1927 – Died December 23rd, 2017

Peter Osborne, head of the North’s Community Relations Council: “We must keep moving forward with a clear and credible path for reconciliation.”

Peter Osborne urges British and Irish governments to push politics forward in North

The PSNI said the murder accused is due to appear before Craigavon Court on Friday.

Nurse died following incident at house in Lisburn

Sinn Féin’s Northern Ireland leader Michelle O’Neill and DUP leader Arlene Foster will face significant challenges in 2018. Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA

News review of the year 2017: Northern Ireland

Thousands of mourners gathered for the funeral of Northern Ireland’s former Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness in Derry in March 2017. Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Review of the year 2017: Death of Martin McGuinness

A Northern Ireland Police Ombudsman’s report has been condemned as unlawful and procedurally unfair.

Judge says ombudsman went beyond his powers in reaching conclusions on atrocity

James Brokenshire: he requested advice on what would be the appropriate salary level for MLAs, “bearing in mind the balance between their constituency and legislative functions”. Photograph: Getty Images

Review recommends MLA salaries be reduced by 27.5% in absence of powersharing

DUP leader Arlene Foster and PSNI chief constable George Hamilton at the unveiling of a memorial to victims of the Enniskillen bombing 30 years ago. Photograph: Justin Kernoghan/Photopress

George Hamilton and Nuala O’Loan call for Historical Investigations Unit to be set up

Unionists accuse SDLP of breaking promise on controversial amenity

Claire Smallwood from Belfast has appealed for the return of the ashes of her daughter Holly which were stolen from her home during a robbery on Tuesday. Photograph: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker.

Victim says Belfast police believe thieves may have thought they were stealing drugs

David Black (52) was shot dead on the M1 motorway by dissident republicans as he drove to work in Maghaberry jail.

Damien Joseph McLaughlin remanded in custody until next month after extradition

Sinn Féin billboard calls for “No Hard Border”:   the European Commission has announced “sufficient progress” has been made in the first phase of Brexit talks. Photograph:  Brian Lawless/PA

Fear remains DUP’s unionist rivals may see accord as slippery road to united Ireland

Both British prime minister Theresa May and European Commission president chief Jean-Claude Juncker put a bright complexion on the crash at their brief joint conference offering hope that all would still be resolved before the week is out. But they didn’t provide any answers as to how that might happen. Photograph: John Thys/AFP/Getty Images

Party says no after Dublin, London and Brussels try to devise necessary fudge

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney said other EU countries were fully supportive of Ireland’s position on the Border. Photograph: Virginia Mayo/EPA

Government could not accept re-emergence of Border, says Tánaiste

Former Northern Ireland First Minister and ex-DUP leader Peter Robinson: “Ministers in the Republic seem to be clambering over each other to instil fear in unionist minds.” Photograph: PA.

Former DUP leader accuses Government of instilling fear in unionists

DUP leader Arlene Foster: “Her majesty’s government have a clear understanding that the DUP will not countenance any arrangement that could lead to a new border being created in the Irish Sea.” Photograph: PA

Party warns any move to ‘placate Dublin and EU’ will wreck Tory/DUP deal

The Think Before You Buy campaign  highlights how recreational drug-users fuel not just the drug trade but also serious organised crime. Photograph: iStock

Co Down officer so impressed by Think Before You Buy initiative that it has been adapted for North

DUP leader Arlene Foster waves to the crowd with deputy leader Nigel Dodds  after her speech in the party’s annual conference at the La Mon hotel in Belfast. Photograph: Michael Cooper/PA Wire

Gerry Moriarty assesses the mood at a very different type of DUP conference

Arlene Foster: “This party will conclude a balanced deal but we will not be party to a one-sided arrangement that rewards intransigent behaviour.”

Leader tells faithful at annual conference Sinn Féin must respect ‘our British culture’

DUP leader Arlene Foster chats with her deputy Nigel Dodds during their party’s annual conference at the La Mon hotel in Belfast. Photograph: Paul McErlane/EPA

From calls to quit to standing on steps of Downing Street: Foster’s tumultuous year

Arlene Foster: “This party will conclude a balanced deal but we will not be party to a one-sided arrangement that rewards intransigent behaviour.”

DUP leader accuses Coveney of exploiting Brexit to press for united Ireland

Louise James outside the Lake of Shadows Hotel in Buncrana, Co Donegal, following the inquest into the deaths of her partner Seán McGrotty, sons Evan and Mark, sister Jodie Lee Daniels and mother Ruth Daniels. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA

Louise James hears family died near slipway by drowning caused by misadventure

RNLI diver John O’Raw at the inquest for five family members who died when their car slipped off Buncrana pier Co Donegal in March 2016.  Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Driver’s partner says Buncrana slipway should have been closed ‘as it was an accident waiting to happen’

Louise James outside the Lake of Shadows Hotel in Buncrana, Co Donegal after the inquest into the death of five of her family members. Photograph: PA

A inquest jury returns a verdict of death by misadventure for all five victims

Seán McGrotty, who was in his late 40s, his two sons Mark (12) and Evan (8), and the boys’ grandmother Ruth Daniels (59) died alongside Ruth’s daughter Jodi-Lee (14)

Audi representative gives evidence at inquest into five deaths

A policeman at  Buncrana Pier, Co Donegal after the tragedy which killed five people in March, 2016. Photograph: PA

Garda on scene found he could not stand as slipway was ‘extremely slippery’

Seán McGrotty, who was in his late 40s, his two sons Mark (12) and Evan (8), and the boys’ grandmother Ruth Daniels (59) died alongside her grandddaughter Jodi-Lee (14)

Five drowned after car slid on ‘treacherous’ algae on slipway into Lough Swilly

Sean McGrotty, who was in his late 40s, his two sons Mark (12) and Evan (8), and the boys’ granny Ruth Daniels (59) died alongside Mrs Daniels’ daughter Jodi-Lee (14)

Eyewitness tells inquest of hearing screams as car sank

 Sinn Fein leader in Northern Ireland Michelle O’Neill giving a keynote speech at the start of the Sinn Fein ardfheis at the RDS. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Analysis: Sinn Féin in North owes political success to departing president and Martin McGuinness

Armalite and ballot box: Gerry Adams launches a Sinn Féin manifesto in 1998. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Analysis: The Sinn Féin leader’s departure will be a big moment in Irish politics

Gerry Adams, Michelle O’Neill and Mary Lou McDonald at the start of the Sinn Féin ardfheis at the RDS. Photograph: Alan Betson

Sinn Féin president expected to lay out time frame for exiting role in ‘historic’ ardfheis

Gary Haggarty, who has yet to be sentenced, is to appear in court on Wednesday where legal submissions will be made in respect of his case. Photograph: Pacemaker Press

As the crimes happened before the 1998 Belfast Agreement, even if convicted, UVF suspect would be eligible for release within two (...)

Former senior loyalist paramilitary turned so-called supergrass Gary Haggarty. Photograph: Pacemaker

Two Catholic workmen were shot dead in a sectarian UVF attack in 1994

The   breakdown of the powersharing talks has been linked to a “historic” speech from Gerry Adams at the Sinn Féin ardfheis in Dublin on Saturday when he declares his future intentions. Photograph:   Mark Marlow/PA

Mood at DUP gathering also key to any future powersharing negotiations

Sinn Fein’s Northern Ireland leader Michelle O’Neill with Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams. File image:  Mark Marlow/PA Wire

‘Honourable compromise’ to restore Executive remains possible, Coveney says

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar lays a wreath at the war memorial in Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh. Photograph: Ronan McGrade/Pacemaker

Catholic diocesan trust says it has no objection to Enniskillen victims memorial

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