Northern Ireland

Conservative MP: deal between Tories and UUP was 'rushed'

Irwin Armstrong
Image caption Irwin Armstrong is to resign as NI Tory party chair

A senior Conservative has said his party's decision not to field candidates in next year's Assembly elections is 'the right thing to do '.

Laurence Robertson MP said the electoral agreement between the Conservatives and the Ulster Unionists had been a 'bit rushed'.

Mr Robertson is the Conservative Chairman of the NI select committee.

He said the time was now right to 'step back and look afresh' at the relationship.

Referring to Irwin Armstrong's resignation Mr Robertson said he was 'always sorry when anyone feels the need to resign '.

The MP said he could not comment on whether Northern Ireland Conservatives had been told by the party hierarchy that candidates would stand in next year's Assembly elections.

He said he hoped the relationship between the UUP and the Tories was 'not dead' and that the Conservatives had 'a lot in common' with the Ulster Unionists and the DUP.

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