Why Was The St Andrews Agreement So Important
He defined principles designed to give power to a new assembly with a conocratic constitution. The police service would be reorganized to allow equal participation of the two communities. Further measures would be taken to address social and economic inequalities. However, the DUP was not a signatory and continued to oppose the initiative. However, referendums north and south of the border approved the agreement. The new Assembly and the Executive for Power Sharing were created in December 1999 with David Trimble as Prime Minister. In October 2002, labour relations within the executive were broken by all parties and Britain suspended decentralisation. It was now imperative to resolve the remaining problems between the two parties. An important issue was Sinn Féin`s recognition of the new police service, but it was also important to bring Ian Paisley`s DUP to the table.
In 2005, when the DUP called for a renegotiation of the Belfast Agreement during the election campaign, the DUP won more seats than the Trimble UUP. This meant that Paisley, known for his anti-Catholic beliefs, had the pretension to become prime minister. The fact that the largest loyalist party remains outside the process would not be democratic. The St Andrews talks, from 11 to 14 October 2006, were aimed at reviving the failed Belfast initiative. Paisley accepted assurances that Sinn Féin would cooperate with the new police agreement and participated in the discussions. Earlier, in May, he had turned down an offer to become prime minister and had always refused to cooperate with Sinn Féin.  Reg Empey, president of the Ulster Unionist Party, called the agreement a “Belfast agreement for slow learners.” “It was part of the terms of the St Andrews agreement. They signed this agreement and they have not been able to implement it. Northern Ireland Minister Peter Hain called the deal an “amazing breakthrough” on BBC Five Live. The St Andrews Agreement (Irish: Comhaonté Chill R`mhinn; Ulster Scots: St Andra`s `Greement, St Andrew`s Greeance or St Andrae`s Greeance) is an agreement between the British and Irish governments and the political parties in Northern Ireland on the decentralisation of power in the region. The agreement was the result of multi-party discussions that took place from 11 to 13 October 2006 in St Andrews, Fife, Scotland, between the two governments and all the major parties in Northern Ireland, including the two largest parties, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and Sinn Féin.
It led to the re-establishment of the Northern Ireland Assembly, the formation (on 8 May 2007) of a new executive power in Northern Ireland and a decision by Sinn Féin to support the Northern Ireland Police Service, the courts and the rule of law. On November 22, 2006, the Northern Ireland (St Andrews Agreement) Act 2006, which implemented the agreement, received royal approval. In the parliamentary elections, the DUP and Sinn Féin won both seats and thus consolidated their position as the two main parties in the Assembly. Peter Hain signed the order to restore the institutions on March 25 and warned that the meeting would be closed if the parties did not reach an agreement before midnight the next day. DuP and Sinn Féin members, led by Ian Paisley and Gerry Adams, met for the first time in person on 26 March and agreed to form an executive on 8 May, with the DUP firmly committing to entering government with Sinn Féin.