UK, Irish PMs to meet on N. Ireland
Irish PM Cowen will meet his British PM Brown to discuss the political situation in Northern Ireland, a spokeswoman for the British PM said.
Irish Prime Minister Brian Cowen will meet his British counterpart Gordon Brown on Monday to discuss the political situation in Northern Ireland, a spokeswoman for the British prime minister said on Sunday.
British ministers have been in close contact with senior officials from Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party and Sinn Fein, who are at loggerheads over how to devolve police and justice powers from London to Belfast.
Sinn Fein want Northern Ireland to ultimately become part of the Irish Republic, while the DUP support continued ties to London, and a policing deal would mark one of the biggest steps since a 1998 peace deal which ended three decades of violence that killed 3,600 people there.
The dispute has brought ties between Sinn Fein and the DUP to breaking point, threatening to upset the delicate balance between Northern Ireland's two largest parties in the power-sharing executive in Belfast.
Reuters Last Mod: 24 Ocak 2010, 17:40