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SINN FEIN warned that “change cannot be stopped” today after establishment parties stitched up a coalition to keep the republicans out of government in Ireland.
Fianna Fail leader Michael Martin was appointed Taoiseach on Saturday. In February’s general election he scraped into parliament, being elected on the sixth count in his South-Central Cork constituency.
He will serve for two years under the agreement before handing over the premiership to coalition partners Fine Gael.
The deal was finally struck after Green Party members accepted their party entering government as part of an anti-Sinn Fein bloc.
It follows 140 days of deadlock after February’s election, in which the mainstream parties polled poorly and the republicans had a surge in support, winning 35 seats.
Sinn Fein President Mary Lou McDonald said: “Today’s marriage of convenience is born of necessity, not ambition. To bide time. To keep others out. To keep others in their place. For the political establishment, it’s their way or no way.
“Well I have to tell them that you will no longer get it all your own way [...] that day is over. The future belongs to those of us who believe in change.”
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