Greens opt out of Belfast to aid Pro-Remainers
The Green Party NI has announced it will not stand in all four Belfast constituencies in the General Election to help other pro-Remain parties.
The move by leader Clare Bailey is the latest in a series of electoral manoeuvres by parties opposed to Brexit as they seek to maximise their efforts to unseat DUP Brexiteers.
The Greens had already withdrawn from the South Belfast contest earlier this week to endorse the SDLP's bid to unseat the DUP's Emma Little Pengelly.
Yesterday, Ms Bailey said her party would also not nominate candidates in west, north and east Belfast. West Belfast is considered a safe Sinn Fein seat but the north and east could be tightly fought contests.
Sinn Fein's John Finucane is hoping to topple DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds in the north of the city and Alliance leader Naomi Long is aiming to unseat the DUP's Gavin Robinson in the east.
Ms Bailey said she was setting aside party interest to back pro-Remain counterparts.
"This election is all about returning as many pro-Remain MPs as possible," she said.
"These are extraordinary times and require an extraordinary response. The Green Party NI achieved our best ever vote across the city of Belfast in the local government election earlier this year. However, I'm prepared to put the need to have pro-Remain MPs returned ahead of party interest."