Page last updated at 18:15 GMT, Monday, 29 September 2008 19:15 UK

Stormont deadlock 'very serious'

Gerry Adams
Gerry Adams met Northern Ireland Secretary Shaun Woodward

The political situation at Stormont is "very serious", Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams has warned.

Mr Adams made his comments after holding private talks with Northern Ireland Secretary Shaun Woodward.

"We have the ridiculous situation where the senior party in these institutions deny that they support or are any part of the St Andrews Agreement," he said.

Ministers have not met since June, amid Sinn Fein insisting progress must first be made on devolving justice powers.

Sinn Fein say the St Andrews Agreement set May this year as a target date for the devolution of policing powers to the Assembly, although the DUP has said it is not bound by any timetable.

Mr Adams said he was concerned at some remarks made recently by DUP members.

"I am very, very concerned that the core which has brought us all, as a people, to where we are, at this point, is being eroded by some elements who don't believe in partnership," he said.

"You don't have to agree with the other person's point of view in order to go into government with them, especially when you are coming out of conflict.

"You don't even have to like the other person, but what you do have to do is build a shared future based upon broad principles."

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