Protestant party rejects justice plans
The No. 2 Protestant party in Northern Ireland, the Ulster Unionists, says it can't support the next step in power-sharing with Catholics and won't vote to elect a a justice minister next week.
Ulster Unionist leader Reg Empey said Friday his lawmakers don't believe the Catholic-Protestant coalition is ready to run a Justice Department in place of Britain.
Ulster Unionist opposition won't stop the Northern Ireland Assembly from electing a justice minister Tuesday. The vote requires backing only from the province's two largest parties: the Protestants of the Democratic Unionists and the Catholics of Sinn Fein.
Both are expected to vote for a compromise candidate, David Ford, who leads a small cross-community party called Alliance.