Page last updated at 14:13 GMT, Friday, 5 February 2010

Clinton invites Northern Ireland's leaders to US

Hillary Clinton: "The people of Northern Ireland are poised to build a thriving society"

The US is to invite Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness to Washington to discuss further American investment in Northern Ireland.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said they would also discuss "ways to build" on Friday's agreement on devolving policing and justice powers.

Mrs Clinton said Northern Ireland's leaders now had greater authority.

"The people of Northern Ireland are poised to build a thriving society on this stronger foundation," she said.

"Our economic envoy, Declan Kelly, will continue working to help Northern Ireland reap the dividends of peace, including economic growth, international investment, and new opportunities.

"In the near future, Declan and I will host First Minister Robinson and Deputy First Minister McGuinness here in Washington."

In December 2007, then first minister Ian Paisley accompanied Mr McGuinness on an investment trip to America.

The trip came six months ahead of a US-backed investment conference in Belfast the following May.

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