UK government to reveal its Stormont intentions amid continuing deadlock

Sinn Féin said there was "little prospect" of a deal ahead of the latest deadline today

UK government to reveal its Stormont intentions amid continuing deadlock

Locked gates at Stormont in Belfast as talks aimed at restoring powersharing in Northern Ireland continue. Picture by: Niall Carson/PA Wire/PA Images

The Northern Irish political parties will meet for talks again this morning, as they look set to miss the latest deadline to restore power-sharing.

The UK's Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire is set to make a statement in the House of Commons later - with extending talks, holding another election, or imposing direct rule from Westminster among his options.

The Executive at Stormont collapsed in January, with efforts to restore power-sharing ongoing since March's election in the North.

The deadline has now been extended several times, with the parties most recently given until today to reach agreement.

Over the weekend, Gerry Adams said it was very unlikely a deal would be reached over the weekend.

The Sinn Féin leader argued: “The DUP are showing no urgency about dealing with the equality and rights issues, which caused the collapse of the political institutions. There is little prospect that they will do this before Monday.

“There is no agreement on Acht na Gaeilge, the Bill of Rights, marriage equality, respect, anti-sectarian measures or legacy issues. Equality, rights and respect are the only basis for sustainable institutions."

He added: “This will only be achieved if there is a step change in the DUP position. Sinn Féin will do business them in that context but a starting point for all the parties and especially the DUP has to be that there can be no return to the status quo."

DUP MLA Simon Hamilton, meanwhile, insisted his party wants to see the institutions "up and running again".

He told BBC: "At this minute in time, that requires Sinn Féin to change its attitude and its approach to these talks and not demand the sort of 10-0 win it's looking for."