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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 October, 2003, 14:58 GMT 15:58 UK
Political process: Day in quotes

BBC News Online looks at the key quotes in a day of rapid political moves in Northern Ireland.

21 October 2003

"In line with our stated position we have authorised our representative to meet with the IICD with a view to proceeding with the implementation of a process to put arms beyond use at the earliest opportunity. We have also authorised a further act of putting arms beyond use. This will be verified under the agreed scheme."
IRA statement

"Implementation by the two governments and the parties of their commitments under the Agreement provides the context in which Irish republicans and unionists will as equals pursue their objectives peacefully, thus providing full and final closure of the conflict."
Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams

"What the IRA say and do will have to be pretty spectacular today. We are five weeks away from an election - an opportunity for people to give their verdict on not only on this deal, but on the past five and half years from the Belfast Agreement."
Ulster Unionist MP Jeffrey Donaldson

"We have heard the language so many times before. What we have heard so far from Gerry Adams won't impress a lot of people out there."
Democratic Unionist MP Nigel Dodds

"Potentially, this could be the most significant day in Northern Ireland since the Good Friday Agreement."
Prime minister's official spokesman

"Either Trimble is up the left, to use a local expression, or Gerry is up the left, but it cannot be a political settlement for the future of Northern Ireland."
UK Unionist Robert McCartney

"If Sinn Fein join the Policing Board that is the most significant act of the 12 hours we are living through."
Denis Bradley, vice-chairman of the Policing Board

"People believed that five and a half years ago the Good Friday Agreement and its implementation was the basis for a full and final end of conflict. I am pleased that five and a half years later the IRA are now saying so and are catching up with the rest of the people on the island so that we can all move forward together."
The SDLP's Alex Attwood

"I'm not sure that we have seen republicans accept in clear and unambiguous terms all that is in paragraph 13 of the joint declaration." Alliance leader David Ford

"Let all parties commit to never again taking this process so near to the edge before fulfilling commitments that need to be met. All pro-Agreement parties will have a huge task now in rebuilding public confidence and in demonstrating their determination to make the process work."

Jane Morrice of the Women's Coalition

"I think that what has happened today is significant but I think there is more to come. Since unionism always worries about the intent of republicans, not only what happens today but effectively every subsequent day for some period now, will either add to or detract from the quality of all of this today. So I think we have to wait and see. "

David Ervine of the Progressive Unionist Party

"It is disgraceful that the people of Northern Ireland are being subjected to this cynical exercise. This choreography, we had expected it to come along, but I don't think anyone thought that perhaps it would be quite so bare-faced."

Cedric Wilson of the Northern Ireland Unionist Party

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IRA signals move over arms
21 Oct 03  |  Northern Ireland
IRA statement in full
21 Oct 03  |  Northern Ireland

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