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Minister Flanagan congratulates the new Secretary of State for Northern Ireland

“I warmly congratulate James Brokenshire on his appointment as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and hope to have the opportunity of an early meeting with him. The post of Secretary of State for Northern Ireland carries significant responsibilities on important matters that remain within the competence of Westminster, such as security, parades and dealing with the legacy of the past. I wish Mr Brokenshire the very best as he assumes this important responsibility.

"The Good Friday Agreement remains the foundation stone for relations on this island. Under the Agreement, the Irish and British Governments have key responsibilities for upholding its principles and supporting its institutions. I look forward to working closely with Mr Brokenshire in discharging these responsibilities in the interests of all of the people of Northern Ireland. That work assumes even greater importance in the context of the challenges arising from the decision that the UK should exit from the European Union.

"For the past two years I have worked closely with the outgoing Secretary of State, Theresa Villiers and have appreciated the effort and commitment she invested in this role. During this period, we worked together to facilitate the achievement of the Stormont House and Fresh Start Agreements which have stabilised the devolved institutions. I wish to acknowledge the positive contribution Theresa made as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and wish her success in her future political career.”