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General Election: Green Party withdraws from North Down poll

Claire Bailey

The Green Party has confirmed it will not stand a candidate in the forthcoming General Election in the North Down constituency.

Leader Clare Bailey said her priority was to maximise the remain vote in the area in what are "extraordinary times".

The Belfast Telegraph understands the party is likely to field four candidates in seats were there is no danger of splitting the remain vote. The party has pledged not to run a candidate in any Belfast seat.

Susan Glass has been confirmed as its candidate for West Tyrone, considered a safe seat for Sinn Fein. She is running on an anti-mining campaign.

The deadline for candidates to nominate is on Thursday.

North Down is shaping up to be one of the most interesting constituency battles in the election after the withdrawal of independent unionist Lady Sylvia Hermon. Sinn Fein had endorsed Lady Hermon before her decision while Alliance, the DUP and UUP are all running in the contest.

Explaining their decision on North Down, Ms Bailey said: "Let’s remember that the majority of people across the constituency voted to Remain and they should have an MP that reflects a pro-European view.

“I want to see the new MP for North Down follow Lady Sylvia Hermon’s lead in defending our position in the European Union at a time when Brexit threatens our way of life.

“The imperative is for us to Remain and work through the EU institutions to tackle climate breakdown, advance workers right and protect our peace process.”

Belfast Telegraph