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Peter Robinson hits back at Allister in Paisley row

Peter Robinson and Jim Allister have clashed over the time taken by the First Minister to comment on his predecessor's retirement from Parliament.

Mr Robinson issued no statement on Tuesday when Ian Paisley announced that he was quitting the House of Commons after 40 years.

Tributes were paid that day by a string of other politicians, including Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Stormont Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness.

The DUP leader made his first public comment at lunchtime yesterday, and also rubbished Mr Allister's remarks about his silence on the day of Mr Paisley's announcement.

Mr Allister added: “It is apparent that the DUP is a party riven by petty divisions and personality clashes.”

Hitting back, the DUP leader yesterday said: “This is another typical poisonous and hate-filled statement from Jim Allister.

“Unlike Jim Allister I recognise the enormous contribution made by Dr Paisley to North Antrim.”

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