Bradley appointed as NI secretary

Northern Ireland secretary James Brokenshire resigns from cabinet over ill-health

British Northern Ireland secretary James Brokenshire resigns

"Clearly, there are immediate challenges", said Bradley.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar commented on the episode after the first cabinet meeting of the new year in Dublin.

SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood MLA met with Mrs Bradley and discussed a constructive way forward.

She is due to meet Ireland's deputy premier and minister for foreign affairs Simon Coveney on Friday.

"I have a very important job to do", she said. "I believe a devolved government in Belfast is best placed to address these issues and take the key decisions which affect people's day to day lives - whether these relate to the economy, public services or issues of policing and justice".

"The call today by the DUP leader for the introduction of Tory direct rule makes clear they have no interest in resolving the issues at the heart of the current crisis and no interest in re-entering powersharing on the basis of equality and respect", she said.

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"Of course we don't want that - we want devolution, but we can't continue without a government here in Northern Ireland".

"So time is short and the clock is ticking". A successor to Mr Brokenshire has yet to be named but Culture Secretary Karen Bradley has been tipped as a favourite to take over. Once one of the world's leading industrial cities and now one of the world's largest urban-waterfront regeneration schemes.

Mrs Bradley said she understood the importance of dealing with the legacy of the Troubles and ensuring a safe future.

However speaking after the announcement, she said she was looking forward to her new role.

On Monday, the first United Kingdom parliament session this year is expected to mark the start of the government reshuffle that the Prime Minister allegedly hopes to use to enhance her positions ahead of a new phase of the Brexit talks.

After undergoing several tests, Mr Brokenshire has been informed that he has a lesion in his lung which needs to be removed. She attended her local comprehensive school in Buxton and later studied maths at Imperial College London.

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Mrs Bradley then worked as an accountant and a tax adviser for nearly 20 years, before entering politics.

Tensions have been raised further after the DUP struck a power deal with May's ruling Conservatives after a general election in June, in which she lost her parliamentary majority. inn Fein argues that the deal gives the DUP unfair influence over British government policy in Northern Ireland, including over Brexit negotiations that will have major implications for Ireland's economy.

Earlier she had served in the Government Whips' Office since September 2012, initially as an Assistant Government Whip and, after a subsequent promotion in 2013, as a Government Whip (Junior Lord of the Treasury).

In January 2018, Mr Brokenshire wrote to the Prime Minister to announce he was resigning as Northern Ireland Secretary.

Her website states that during this role she secured the passing of the 2015 Modern Slavery Act, which it describes as a "landmark piece of legislation" that will protect people from enforced labour.

Ms Bradley, 47, has been the MP for Staffordshire Moorlands since May 2010, and became a Home Office minister in 2014.

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