Page last updated at 15:22 GMT, Wednesday, 21 April 2010 16:22 UK
Election 2010 : Northern Ireland candidates



Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams
Gerry Adams is Sinn Fein president

Sinn Fein has been the largest nationalist party since 2001.

This is the first Westminster election that Sinn Fein has fought without the IRA in existence.

Led by Gerry Adams, the party remains committed to its abstentionist policy, with all of its MPs refusing to attend Westminster.

It is running candidates in 17 out of 18 Northern Ireland's constituencies.

EAST ANTRIM

Oliver McMullan

Oliver McMullan has been a Moyle District councillor since 1993. He is Sinn Fein's first chairman of the local District Policing Partnership. He owns a pub in Cushendall, where he has lived all his life. He is a Disability Champion for Moyle Council, and has served as a board member on the North Eastern Education and Library Board.

EAST BELFAST

Niall  Donnghaile

Niall Ó Donnghaile is a University of Ulster politics graduate who works as a press officer for Sinn Fein. Mr Ó Donnghaile has been involved with the party since the age of 16. He is an Irish language activist. He is from the Short Strand area of east Belfast.

EAST LONDONDERRY

Cathal O hOisin

Cathal O hOisin was first elected to Limavady Borough Council in 2005, and he is currently serving as its mayor. Mr O hOisin is the party's leader on Limavady District Policing Partnership. The Dungiven man is a member of a number of local community development and regeneration committees. This is his first general election.

FERMANAGH AND SOUTH TYRONE

Michelle Gildernew

Michelle Gildernew was first elected as the constituency's MP since 2001, when she won by just 53 votes to take the seat previously held for 18 years by Ulster Unionist Ken Maginnis. In the last general election she secured 38.2% of the vote (a 4,582 majority). Ms Gildernew is agriculture minister at Stormont.

FOYLE

Martina Anderson

Martina Anderson was convicted of conspiracy to cause explosions in England in 1986, and spent more than 13 years in jail. Ms Anderson became an assembly member for Foyle in 2007. She is Sinn Fein's director of unionist engagement.

LAGAN VALLEY

Paul Butler

Paul Butler has been a Lisburn councillor since 1997 and was elected to the Stormont Assembly in 2007. He was jailed in 1973 when he was 17 for the murder of a policeman and spent 16 years in prison. In the last general election, he came fourth in Lagan Valley with 7.5% of the vote.

MID-ULSTER

Martin McGuinness

Martin McGuinness is a former IRA commander who went on to become the deputy first minister in the Stormont Assembly. He served two prison sentences in the 1970s for running arms and IRA membership. He has been Mid-Ulster MP since 1997. In the 2005 Westminster election, he took the seat with 47.6% of the vote.

NEWRY AND ARMAGH

Conor Murphy

Conor Murphy was first elected as an assembly member in 1998. He was sentenced in 1982 to five years in prison for IRA membership and possessing explosives. He became MP for the constituency in 2005 with 41.4% of the vote. He was part of Sinn Fein's team during the Hillsborough, Leeds Castle and St Andrew's negotiations.

NORTH ANTRIM

Daithi McKay

Daithi McKay began working for Sinn Fein when he was aged 19. After leaving school, Mr McKay worked in a bank in Belfast. He was elected to the Assembly in 2007. He is the party's environment spokesman. This is his first time standing for election to Westminster.

NORTH BELFAST

Gerry Kelly

Gerry Kelly was aged 19 in 1973 when he was jailed for life for his role in bombing the Old Bailey. He escaped from the Maze Prison in 1983, but was recaptured in 1986. He was a member of Sinn Fein's negotiating team for the Good Friday Agreement, and has been an assembly member for North Belfast since 1998. In the last general election, he came second with 28.6% of the vote.

NORTH DOWN

Vincent Parker

Vincent Parker is the party's head of equality and human rights, as well as a project director for republican ex-prisoners. He is a member of the South Belfast District Policing Partnership. He is on the management committee of Feile an Phobail and presents a show on Feile FM. He has worked as a senior manager in a life-sciences company.

SOUTH ANTRIM

Mitchel McLaughlin

Mitchel McLaughlin has been a member of Sinn Fein since the 1960s and has been a senior figure for many years. He was elected to Derry City Council in 1985 and served as a councillor for more than 20 years. He was elected as a Foyle assembly member in 1998 and re-elected in 2003 before switching constituencies to South Antrim in 2007, where he was elected again. He lives in Derry.

SOUTH BELFAST

Alex Maskey

Alex Maskey withdrew his nomination to give the SDLP's Alasdair McDonnell a free run as a nationalist candidate in the constituency.

SOUTH DOWN

Caitriona Ruane

Caitriona Ruane was Irish Tennis Player of the Year in 1981, and represented Ireland at junior, Under-21 and senior level. In the 1980s, she worked as a volunteer in the troubled Central American countries, Nicaragua and El Salvador. During her time as Stormont education minister, she has overseen the abolition of the 11-plus. She has been a South Down assembly member since 2003. At the last general election, she came second with 25.8% of the vote.

STRANGFORD

Mickey Coogan

Mickey Coogan was elected to Down District Council in 2005 and has chaired several council committees. Mr Coogan has represented the council on statutory bodies such as the SEELB, the Down District Policing Partnership, the Down Community Safety Partnership, Citizens Advice, East Border Region Committee and the Down Rural Area Partnership. He lives in Ballynahinch and this is his first general election.

UPPER BANN

John O'Dowd

John O'Dowd is a member of Sinn Fein's Ard Chomhairle (party executive) and has been a member of the party for 25 years. He has been an assembly member for Upper Bann since 2003. A former chairman of the Stormont Public Accounts Committee, he is the party's education spokesman. He is originally from Banbridge but now lives in Lurgan. At the last general election, he came third with 20.9% of the vote.

WEST BELFAST

Gerry Adams

Gerry Adams is a veteran republican who has been Sinn Fein President since 1983. During his period of internment in 1972, he was released to take part in negotiations on behalf of the IRA with the British government. In the 1990s he brokered the IRA ceasefire and the acceptance of places in a Northern Ireland Assembly. He has recently been involved in a number of controversies over his alleged role in the IRA and his response to allegations about child abuse made against his brother Liam. At the last general election, he topped the poll with 70.5% of the vote.

WEST TYRONE

Pat Doherty

Pat Doherty has been an assembly member for West Tyrone since 1998 and was first elected as its MP in 2001. He was born in Glasgow, but returned to his parents' native Donegal in his 20s. He is a long-serving Sinn Fein activist, having been the party's director of elections in 1984 and a national organiser from 1985 to 1988. Since 1988, he has served as a vice-president of the party. At the last general election, he topped the poll with 38.9% of the vote.



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