Criticism Of President Higgins Is ‘Contrived And Cynical'
Irish Daily Mirror|September 20, 2021
Politician defends decision not to attend centenary
Cate McCurry

Certain reactions to the President declining an invitation to an event marking the centenary of Northern Ireland have been “contrived and cynical”, a politician has said.

The SDLP’s Claire Hanna accused some unionist politicians of exploiting the public spat after Michael D Higgins turned down the invite to a service being attended by the Queen.

The South Belfast MP said he has “walked the walk” on reconciliation and north-south matters.

Mr Higgins has faced criticism from unionists for refusing to attend the service in Armagh, which has been organised by the four main churches in Northern Ireland.

The President said the title of the event, which refers to the partition of Ireland and foundation of Northern Ireland, is not politically neutral and so he feels it is inappropriate for him to attend.

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