Northern Ireland

No return to power-sharing before Christmas as DUP rules out immediate deal

The BBC reported the DUP had ‘ruled out’ a pre-Christmas deal, while party leaders in the North have signalled a return to government before new year unlikely

Jeffrey Donaldson, DUP leader: said his party will not be ‘calendar-led’ on a date for reforming the executive. Picture: Getty

The DUP has ruled out a return to Stormont before Christmas, as other party leaders in the north have accepted a deal before the new year is now unlikely.

The BBC reported this morning that despite hopes a deal for the return of government in Northern Ireland was imminent, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) believes “the process is not yet complete”.

Northern Ireland has been without an executive for nearly two years due to the DUP’s boycott of the institutions over post-Brexit trading arrangements. While Jeffrey Donaldson, the leader of the DUP, has said his party will not be “calendar-led” on a date for reforming the executive, there has been growing speculation in recent days that he and the British government were preparing the ground for a return.