NORTH Belfast Sinn Féin MP John Finucane has described DUP threats to collapse the institutions as ‘political recklessness'.

It comes after comments made by DUP leader Jeffrey Donaldson who said there will be “major implications” at Stormont if British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss fails to swiftly set a formal deadline to end negotiations with Brussels over the Northern Ireland Protocol.

Discussion are due to renew next week. Ms Truss has replaced Lord Frost who resigned last month as the British government's chief Brexit negotiator. 

Mr Donaldson said if there was not "rapid and decisive progress" there would be "major implications for the stability of the political institutions in Northern Ireland.” 

Mr Donaldson had threatened to collapse the institutions at the end of October. The political parties face fresh Assembly elections in May.

Mr Finucane said: “Latest threats from the DUP to collapse the political institutions and walk out of government in the middle of an unprecedented health pandemic represents political neglect and displays clear contempt for people, communities and our health workers.

“The DUP do not represent a majority of people or businesses on this island, who unlike the DUP oppose Brexit and support the Protocol which helps to limit the damage caused as a consequence of Brexit.

“It was the DUP that championed Brexit along with the Tories, they must shoulder the responsibility for the consequences.

“The other parties in the Executive are getting on with their responsibilities and prioritising the needs of people at this time of great challenge.

“The reckless DUP threats to collapse the institutions must end, the priority of all in the Executive must be to lead us through the Covid-19 pandemic and support families through the rising cost of living crisis."