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Tory: I will stand in Northern Ireland Assembly poll

A Northern Ireland Conservative has moved to quash speculation about the Tories staying out of the Assembly election battle next year.

Amid uncertainty about the future of his party’s pact with the UUP, Tory Ian Parsley underlined his intention to stand in North Down in the 2011 Stormont poll.

He said: “The position of the Conservative Party at every level is that, if the Ulster Unionists are prepared to join us on that basis, we look forward to co-operating with them. We will be out on the doors within the next few weeks talking to people about our values and our programme and taking on board their comments about how we can improve the quality of life for everyone in Northern Ireland.”

North Down Conservative Association chair Paul Leeman likewise stated: “It has never been clearer that Conservatives need to cam

paign for national politics and responsible government in Northern Ireland. My Association endorsed councillor Ian Parsley as its candidate last month, and continues to do so.”

Mr Parsley stood unsuccessfully in the recent General Election in North Down on the Tory-UUP ticket, losing heavily to Lady Hermon. She had been the Ulster Unionist party’s sole MP, but had refused to stand on a Conservative ticket.

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