The Irish Nationalist Party Singh Fein, who seeks to unite with Ireland, welcomed Northern Ireland’s “New Ella” Saturday as it won the largest seat in the Northern Ireland Assembly for the first time in a historic victory.
Almost all votes have been counted since Thursday’s local elections in Britain, and the Sinn Féin party has secured 27 of the 90 parliamentary seats. The Democratic Unionist Party, which has dominated Northern Ireland’s parliament for 20 years, has won 24 seats. Victory means that the Sinn Féin party is eligible for the post of first minister in Belfast. This is the first time for the Irish Nationalist Party since Northern Ireland was founded as a Protestant majority state in 1921.
The Union Party, which is neither a nationalist nor a unionist, also surged in support and was expected to win 17 seats and become another big winner in the vote.
Victory is an important milestone for the Sinn Féin party, using bombs and bullets to take Northern Ireland out of British rule during decades of violence involving Irish Republican militant protestant royalists. I have long been associated with the Irish Republican Army, a paramilitary organization that I tried to remove. Paramilitary and British troops and police.
“Today marks the arrival of a new era,” said Michelle O’Neill, Vice President of the Sinn Féin Party, shortly before the final results were announced. “My commitment is to make politics work, regardless of religious, political or social background.”
O’Neill emphasized that it is imperative that the divided politicians of Northern Ireland meet next week to form an administrative body, a delegated government of Northern Ireland. If nothing can be formed within six months, the government will collapse and new elections and uncertainty will increase.
“There is space for all of us with us in this state,” O’Neill said. “There is an urgent need to revive executives, start returning money to people’s pockets, and start repairing medical services. People can’t wait.”
The Sinn Féin victory marks a historic shift in declining support for unionist parties, but continues over Northern Ireland’s complex power-sharing politics and post-Brexit arrangements. It is not clear what will happen next because of the conflict.
Under the compulsory power-sharing system created by the 1998 Peace Agreement, which ended decades of Catholic and Protestant conflicts, the work of the First and Deputy First Ministers is the largest union party. And the largest Protestant party. Both posts need to be filled for the government to work, but the Democratic Unionist Party suggests that it may not be useful under the first minister of the Sinn Féin party.
The Democratic Unionist Party also said it would refuse to join the new government unless there were major changes to the post-Brexit border agreement known as the Northern Ireland Protocol.
These post-Brexit rules, which came into force after the UK left the European Union, imposed customs and border inspections on some goods entering Northern Ireland from other parts of the UK. , An important pillar of the peace process.
But the rules offended many members. They claim that the new check creates a barrier between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK and undermines their British identity. In February, Democratic Unionist Paul Givan resigned as his first minister in protest of the deal, causing a new political crisis in Northern Ireland.
Democratic Unionist leader Jeffrey Donaldson said he would announce whether he would return to the government next week.
“We will consider what we need to do now to take the actions required by the government. We will clarify my decision on all of them early next week,” he told the BBC.
Britain’s Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Brandon Lewis, said he would meet with all party leaders within a few days and call for a quick return to the government’s business.
Voters gave a clear message, “We want a fully delegated government in Northern Ireland, address the issues surrounding the Protocol, and hope that politics will work better.”
Ned Price, a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State, said, “Political leaders in Northern Ireland have taken the necessary steps to rebuild the power-sharing executives, one of the core institutions established by the Good Friday Agreement. I urge you to take it. “
“We look forward to working with Northern Ireland’s democratic partners, the UK and Irish governments, to support peace, prosperity and stability throughout the region,” Price said in a statement.
Saturday results brought United Ireland’s ultimate goal, the Sinn Féin party, one step closer, but this year’s party took unification out of the spotlight during a campaign dominated by soaring living costs.
O’Neill said there would be no constitutional amendment to the unification of Ireland until voters decide. Sinn Féin party leader Mary Lou McDonald said on Friday that plans for a unified referendum could take place within the next five years.
John Curtis, a polling expert who is a professor of political science at the University of Strathclyde, said the power shift in Northern Ireland is a legacy of Brexit.
“Because of the division within the community as to whether the Northern Ireland Protocol is sufficiently amendable or needs to be abolished, member votes have been fragmented,” he said on the BBC’s web site. I wrote on the site.
Persuading the Democratic Unionist Party to join the new government and pressing the EU to agree to a major change in the post-Brexit deal will be a headache for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Curtis said. Added. Johnson’s own Conservatives lost at least 450 seats in the local elections on Thursday.
The UK’s conservative government has stated that Brexit’s customs arrangements would not work without the support of Northern Ireland members. Johnson threatens to unilaterally suspend the Brexit rule if the EU refuses to change the Brexit rule.