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The DUP’s Westminster Leader and Lagan Valley MP Sir Jeffrey Donaldson has said the Deputy First Minister must acknowledge and act on the words of Justice McAlinden.

As he addressed the court at the outset of a legal challenge in relation to payment of the Victims pension the judge accused Michelle O'Neill of ignoring the rule of law by delaying the pension.

The DUP MP said,

"SF has wrongly and incomprehensively put the considerations of bombers ahead of the concerns of innocent victims.

The intervention by Judge McAlinden is both welcome and a timely nudge for the Deputy First Minister to designate a Department to drive forward the pension for innocent victims.

The victims pension legislation has exactly the same standing as the other laws which were passed in Westminster when Sinn Fein was blocking the devolved government. Sinn Fein cannot continually ignore the law just because it doesn't suit republicans.

This message has now been reinforced in court. The Deputy First Minister needs to accept that reality and act upon it.

The First Minister has been clear that she stands ready to bring forward the pension and the Justice Minister is happy to see DoJ administer the pension.

Every other party supports moving forward yet Sinn Fein again stands isolated and obstructive. It's time they lifted their veto and stopped continually elevating terrorists above
the needs of everyone else, including victims.”