Northern Ireland news

Conservative peer Lord Jonathan Caine appointed to NIO

Lord JonathanCaine

UUP leader Doug Beattie last night welcomed the appointment of Conservative peer Lord Jonathan Caine to the Northern Ireland Office.

A former special adviser to several secretary of states for Northern Ireland, he is to undertake the role of parliamentary under secretary of state.

Mr Beattie said Lord Caine had "a deep understanding of the political complexities of Northern Ireland having been involved in all sorts of negotiations over many years.

"There has been no minister answering questions for Northern Ireland in the House of Lords since Lord Duncan left and with forthcoming legislation, it is vital for that gap to be filled."

Northern Ireland secretary of state Brandon Lewis also welcomed the appointment and said he was "looking forward to working with him to continue to drive Northern Ireland's growth and prosperity".

He added: "His experience, knowledge and expertise on Northern Ireland will be a tremendous asset to the department".

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Northern Ireland news