Leading article

Time to finally resolve Ardoyne parades impasse

While the focus of recent days has been on the fallout from the shock vote in favour of the UK leaving the European Union, work has been going on behind the scenes to resolve the Ardoyne parades impasse.

Any sincere efforts to find an agreed resolution of this intractable issue must be welcomed and clearly it is in the best interests of this part of north Belfast and the wider community for this problem to be addressed.

As we know, the Parades Commission's ban on the Orange Order's return parade on July 12 has resulted in a three-year stand-off.

This has been bad for community relations at this interface and placed an intolerable burden on the PSNI's budget.

Maintaining the Camp Twaddell protest and holding nightly parades has failed to achieve the Orange Order's aim so it stands to reason that another approach is needed.

In recent days it has emerged that a process has taken place between the Orange Order and members of Crumlin and Ardoyne Residents Association (Cara), that has also involved the Rev Harold Good and a Derry businessman.

It appears what is being proposed is that three lodges and bands will be permitted to walk past Ardoyne shops on Friday morning.

This date is hugely significant for unionists as it marks the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme.

It is understood that in return, the Twaddell camp would be dismantled and the order will not apply for a return march on the Twelfth.

There is some opposition to this plan, from one of the lodges involved in the stand-off, as well as the Greater Ardoyne Residents Collective (Garc).

However, an agreed arrangement that finally resolves one of the bitterest and most divisive parading issues in the north has to be viewed in a positive light.

It is the nature of these disputes that no side can get everything it wants but with goodwill, determination and respect, it is possible to find a way through the most difficult of problems.

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Leading article