The Northern Secretary has said he believes that there are positive signs Sinn Féin is delivering support for the police.

Speaking in the House of Commons, Peter Hain said that because of that support he expected a fully devolved government in place at Stormont by 26 March.

The forthcoming DUP manifesto in the assembly election is expected to say that Sinn Féin’s words of support for the PSNI are not enough and that actions are required to prove that the Sinn Féin Ard-Fheis commitment is being delivered.

DUP MP Gregory Campbell said that even though 'qualified words of support' for the police were there, more information should be offered to the PSNI so that historic crimes could be brought before the courts.

A Sinn Féin delegation is to meet with Northern Ireland's Chief Constable Sir Hugh Orde next week.