Sinn Féin's Finance spokesperson has reiterated that he does not want to lead the party at the present time.

Pearse Doherty said he will not be putting his name forward to succeed Gerry Adams, who announced at the weekend he will step down as Sinn Féin President next year.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Mr Doherty said he had a young family and it was not the right move for him at this particular time.

He added that he was humbled his name was associated with the leadership and described as "ridiculous" claims that he had been told not to run for the position.

Whoever is elected, he said, would have his 100% support.


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Mr Doherty said he was confident that there a number of young republicans who would be capable of stepping into Mr Adams' shoes.

He said Sinn Féin was about change on the island of Ireland, delivering on the peace process and addressing the crises in health and housing.

Mr Doherty said the party's intention was to lead the next government and would not exclude any party from conversations about a republican programme for government.

Separately, Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said the party would not consider going into government with Sinn Féin.

Mr Martin also ruled out the prospect of a supply and confidence agreement.

Fundamentally, he said, even those who would replace Mr Adams were strong apologists for an appalling campaign of violence.

Mr Martin said it was extraordinary that there was no voice for the anti-Brexit majority in Northern Ireland and said this was largely because Sinn Féin "put itself first".

He said that he was focused on holding Sinn Féin to account for its actions in Northern Ireland.


Speaking on RTÉ's Today with Seán O'Rourke, Minister of State Patrick O'Donovan said Sinn Féin would have to make a clear commitment to all of the basic constitutional principles, including commitment to the courts - including the Special Criminal Court, before Fine Gael could consider going into coalition with them.

He said he would also like a commitment that everyone with information about past atrocities would come forward and there would be no holds barred in relation to prosecutions.