12:05 GMT +317 July 2018
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    British Prime Minister Theresa May speaks during a media conference with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at EU headquarters in Brussels on Friday, Dec. 8, 2017.

    Ex-Party Leader on N Ireland Issue: UK's May Should Stop 'Pussyfooting Around'

    © AP Photo / Virginia Mayo
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    Northern Ireland has been engulfed in the political deadlock since the snap assembly election in March 2017. The situation has raised the prospect of direct rule from London, an outcome undesirable for both parties.

    Lord Trimble, the former leader of the Ulster Unionist Party and one of the architects of the Good Friday accords, which were the cornerstone of the Irish peace process, characterized the current situation in the region as "unstable" and called for the imposition of direct rule.

    READ MORE: Theresa May Reportedly to Intervene in Stalled Northern Ireland Talks

    He called for May to stop "pussyfooting around" and not to submit to Sinn Fein's provocation.

    Trimble's statement comes after the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) refused to come to an agreement with Sinn Fein and declared that there was "no prospect" for a deal.

    On Tuesday, Theresa May urged the leaders of the two major Northern Irish political parties to make a final effort in their ongoing talks on forming the devolved regional government.

    The DUP and Sinn Fein have been struggling to strike a power-sharing deal since the snap assembly election in March 2017. The latest round of talks between the governing parties began in January, however, Northern Ireland still has no executive.

    READ MORE: Northern Ireland Talks Have Ended in Failure — Sinn Fein

    The apple of discord between the parties appears to be the bill on the official status of the Irish language, which is being vehemently advanced by Sinn Fein. The DUP, though trying to meet Sinn Fein's demands, suggested culture legislation that embraced Irish and Ulster Scots, which fell short of what Sinn Feins tries to achieve.

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