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Government deal could be reached this weekend, says Greens deputy leader

Catherine Martin said a number of issues need to be ironed out as discussions continue.

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Catherine Martin (Brian Lawless/PA)

Catherine Martin (Brian Lawless/PA)

Catherine Martin (Brian Lawless/PA)

Parties are coming to the end of the government formation process and a way forward could be agreed this weekend, the deputy leader of the Green Party has said.

Talks are continuing between Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and the Green Party in Dublin on Saturday, 125 days since February’s inconclusive general election result.

Catherine Martin said there are a number of issues that still need to be “ironed out”.

It could all hinge on today but I do think we are coming to the end of the process this weekendCatherine Martin

“I think an agreement can be reached some time this weekend. It is hard to judge and I can’t give an exact hour or a day but I think it will be this weekend,” she told RTE News.

“There are a number of issues that need to be ironed out. I have to respect the confidentiality of the process so I’m not going to name those items but there a number of items that still need to be teased out.”

Asked if she was confident of securing agreement on a 7% reduction in carbon emissions, she said: “That’s what we are examining today and that is what is important for our members in order for it to be passed.

“It could all hinge on today but I do think we are coming to the end of the process this weekend.”

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Leo Varadkar (Photocall Ireland/PA)

Leo Varadkar (Photocall Ireland/PA)

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Leo Varadkar (Photocall Ireland/PA)

On Friday, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said: “I think there is a strong possibility we will have a programme for government in the next couple of days.

“I know it is taking a long time but I am of the view, and so would a lot of others, that it is better to nail down some of the issues now rather than have them become points of conflict during a five-year government term.

“The prospect is there for a government to take office on the last week of June or first week of July.”

PA