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  Setback for Northern Ireland assembly
Updated 02 November 2001, 14.35
Trimble
The fate of Northern Ireland's power-sharing government has been dealt a blow after the failure of David Trimble to be re-elected as its leader.

Mr Trimble heads the Ulster Unionist Party which wants Britain to continue to govern Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland map
Mr Trimble resigned in July in protest against delays in the terrorist group the IRA getting rid of its weapons.

The IRA's political wing Sinn Fein has always demanded British soldiers should leave Northern Ireland.

Weapons

But the IRA's decision to put some of its weapons beyond use last month breathed new life into the peace process.

After that Mr Trimble said he was willing to resume his post.

But in Friday's vote he couldn't rally enough support from his own side.

Britain will now have to decide whether to suspend the assembly or call new elections.

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