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DUP and UUP clash over PSNI recruitment policy

Attempts to tease out divisions between Ulster Unionists and their Conservative partners over the PSNI 50/50 recruitment policy have been condemned as “cynical and divisive”.

DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson was accused of making a “mountain out of a molehill” in calling on the UUP to clarify its stance after Conservative representatives on a Parliamentary standing committee voted with Labour, SDLP and the Liberal Democrats in support of the policy continuing for a further year.

Mr Donaldson was the only member of the committee to vote against the renewal of the temporary provisions while there was 10 votes in favour.

“Where does the UUP stand on this policy which discriminates against Protestants joining the police? asked Mr Donaldson. “This decision confirms our longstanding suspicions that a UCUNF MP would be whipped to vote along party lines regardless of the impact for constituents in Northern Ireland,”

But a UUP statement said: “Jeffrey Donaldson is playing a cynical and divisive political game; he is making a mountain out of a molehill.

“The Ulster Unionist Party is completely against 50/50 recruitment and strongly welcomes the fact that it will be dropped after next year.”

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