Sinn Fein yesterday insisted that Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness toasting the Queen during a reception at Windsor Castle on Tuesday night did not signal a change of direction for the abstentionist party.
A Sinn Fein spokesman said that “party policy in relation to taking our seats in Westminster remains the same and we will not be taking the seats”.
The Sinn Fein spokesman added that “the issue of [the Republic] rejoining the Commonwealth is a decision for the Irish people”.
Mr McGuinness stood for the toast, proposed by Irish President Michael D Higgins, as an orchestra played God Save The Queen.
As an MP, from 1997 to 2013, Mr McGuinness refused to sit in the House of Commons because he would have had to swear an oath of allegiance to the monarch.