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Government formation talks to begin this week

The Green Party has entered coalition talks to form a new Irish government.

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Green Party leader Eamon Ryan (Brian Lawless/PA)

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan (Brian Lawless/PA)

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan (Brian Lawless/PA)

The leaders of Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and the Greens said they have agreed to start formal negotiations for a programme for government this week.

Micheal Martin, Leo Varadkar and Eamon Ryan held discussions on Tuesday morning to outline the negotiations process on a programme for government.

The negotiations are expected to go on for a few weeks.

The Greens have said a 7% annual reduction in carbon emissions is a red line issue for them entering into a coalition government.

Speaking after the meeting on Tuesday morning, Mr Ryan that the leaders of the two parties have committed to 7% carbon cuts.

“It’s important for the country and important for the people that there is a way out of the current crisis we are in,” he said.

“It’s really hitting people hard. For the Green Party, it was helpful at the weekend we got further clarification with regard to one of the questions we asked of Fianna Fail and Fine Gael in response to their framework document around the issue of climate change.

“It was saying that all parties are committed to reducing emission – we need to follow that and go for 7% reduction in emissions.

“That can and will be good for our country, that it is going to be good for every part of our country, that it is an area where we can create a lot of quality new jobs, and critically we have to bring social justice with it.

“We can and will be good at that in this country.”

Mr Ryan also produced a document he received from Fianna Fail and Fine Gael which states that the parties will commit to developing measures to achieve an average of 7% reduction in annual emissions for the next decade.

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(PA Graphics)

(PA Graphics)

Press Association Images

(PA Graphics)

“But the negotiation is going to be more than that, it has to encompass the wide gambit of everything the government has to do,” he added.

Mr Ryan said the meeting was about the logistics around timetables and structures and teams.

“I think one of the things I am really pleased with is we are going to involve our parliamentary parties right the way through,” he added.

“It was mainly talking about the structures and mechanisms and the logistics so it was a good working meeting setting out those broad arrangements.

“My preference would be to try and get this done by the end of the month. It will take a bit of time to go through the postal ballot but I think the Irish public will expect this to be done in a matter of weeks and not longer and I share that.”

PA