HC Deb 28 April 1994 vol 242 c375
12. Dr. Spink

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether the joint declaration remains on the table.

Sir Patrick Mayhew

The declaration remains, and will remain, a free-standing declaration of principles. It is not for negotiation.

Dr. Spink

While I am pleased that the declaration is not time limited, will my hon. Friend confirm and make it clear that the validity of the joint declaration cannot be affected by the response of any particular party? Does he agree that the whole world must now see that the words of Sinn Fein blaming the British Government for a stalemate are totally false?

Sir Patrick Mayhew

I very much agree with my hon. Friend, and I should like to endorse, with respect, what the Taoiseach said yesterday: I think we will all be entitled, particularly in view of the events of the last couple of weeks, which have left several dead, to seek in our turn some clarification from those responsible for the continuing violence".