All peace walls between Catholic and Protestant areas in Northern Ireland are to be brought down by 2023, Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness announced today.

The Stormont First and Deputy First Ministers said the project is part of what they called the most ambitious plans ever to build a shared future for Northern Ireland.

The plan includes a united youth programme in which 10,000 young people aged between 16 and 24, who are unemployed and not in education, would be given a one-year work placement with pay.

More contentious issues, such as parades, flags and symbols, were not included in the plans.

They are to be addressed by a cross-party group under an independent chairperson, which is to be established in the next few weeks.

It has also been revealed that private talks involving politicians in Northern Ireland and the PSNI are to be held in Wales next week in an effort to resolve the problem around controversial parades.

The PSNI said the discussions in Cardiff would debate a range of issues around policing in Belfast.