Sinn Féin MLA Conor Murphy has said the British Secretary of State should listen to the voices of leading US figures on key issues of the Protocol and legacy.
Speaking ahead of Chris Heaton-Harris’ visit to the US, Conor Murphy said:
“The US administration has been steadfast in its support for the Protocol and the Good Friday Agreement and ensuring people in the north and our economy is fully protected.
“It has affirmed its support with the appointment of Special Envoy Joe Kennedy and it’s critical that Chris Heaton Harris works with him and the parties to restore power-sharing and use 25th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement as a platform to our economic benefit
“The US has also been very clear in its strong opposition to the British Government’s flawed Legacy Bill and its negative implications for victims and families and their right to truth and justice. That was reaffirmed in a letter to Rishi Sunak last week.
“Chris Heaton-Harris must heed the voices of senior figures in the US, and right across Europe, urging his government to scrap the Legacy Bill and to continue working in good faith with the EU to find durable and pragmatic solutions on the Protocol.
“Businesses and our economy need certainty and stability and to continue benefitting from the unique opportunities afforded by the Protocol to create jobs and attract investment.
“He has a responsibility to ensure workers get a fair pay rise, invest in our health and public services and to strengthen the Rates Support Grant available to local councils to keep costs down for households.
“There is no time to waste. People need an Executive formed now to deliver for them. They need clarity from Chris Heaton-Harris on what, if anything, he has done to restore the Assembly and Executive. He should spell that out to US leaders during his visit.”