If we accept that the Rule of Law must apply equally (as per yesterday’s blog), that will also apply to parades and protests, and to Ministers.
The latter is important. I have long argued that an independent panel is required to enforce the Ministerial Code. One of the main reasons for this is that there have been clear cases over the past three years or so of Ministers breaching the requirement under that Code to support the PSNI. As a result, the PSNI do not have cover to enforce the law – resulting in ludicrous cases stretching as far as the PSNI effectively apologising to paramilitary groups for doing so.
At the talks, all parties can agree to this, right?