May Sets Up Meeting With Irish "Kingmakers"

May and the leader of the DUP, Arlene Foster, were both tight lipped after the crucial meeting, but later Foster said on her social media site: "Discussions are going well.and we hope soon to be able to bring this work to a successful conclusion".

"We have worked as a party with the DUP before and those are productive talks".

Ms Foster said the talks deadline remained "realistic".

'Much of it is complete and utter nonsense, I have to say.

"People regard the peace process which was very hard earned over very many years by a lot of people, people shouldn't regard it as a given, it isn't certain, it is under stress, it is fragile".

"It will take us several months to draw out the conditions of an orderly withdrawal... so let's not waste time", he said.

Ms Foster also had short, separate discussion with new Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney.

May lost her parliamentary majority in last week's election and is now desperately seeking the support of the 10 MPs from Northern Ireland's ultra-conservative Democratic Unionist Party.

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Sinn Féin spoke out this afternoon, warning Theresa May that a deal with the DUP would be in breach of the Good Friday agreement.

Ms Foster dismissed suggestions her deal with the Tories threatened the peace process.

He said: "We are impatiently waiting for the negotiating position of the United Kingdom gov (ernment)".

"The only way they could be sure of what the other's intentions were was trusting me to be right when I told them that it was my view that, for example, if Sinn Fein did a certain thing, then Ian Paisley would agree to join the government".

A Conservative source said there was so far no deal to announce and that a decision on the timing of any announcement would only be made once an agreement is finalised.

The source confirmed there was no need for a deal on a so-called "confidence and supply" arrangement to be sealed in order to press ahead with the Speech, and said Mrs May wanted the Government to "get on with its business".

"We have just finished a meeting with the British Prime Minister and her Secretary of State, and we told her very directly that she was in breach of the Good Friday agreement", said Mr Adams after the meeting.

The Prime Minister will attend the European Council summit to discuss issues such as migration and security, but will be absent from a dinner when the 27 other national leaders review the start of the Brexit process.

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