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Credit: Reuters/Andrew Winning
Fri Sep 16, 2011 1:39pm EDT
DUBLIN (Reuters) - Former Irish Republican Army (IRA) commander and current deputy first minister of Northern Ireland Martin McGuinness will be put forward to run for president of the Republic of Ireland, his Sinn Fein party said on Friday.
McGuinness' candidacy for the October 27 poll has been approved by the leadership of the nationalist party, paving the way for the former political wing of the IRA to contest its first ever election for the figurehead role.
"A number of options were under discussion, including the one which has been now favored by the officer board and is going for the approval of the Ard Chomhairle (national executive) on Sunday morning and that is to stand Martin McGuinness as the candidate," Sinn Fein lawmaker Pearse Doherty told national broadcaster RTE.
Known internationally for its campaign against British rule during decades of violence in Northern Ireland, Sinn Fein has entered mainstream politics in recent years through its sharing of power north of the border and a trebling of its presence in the southern parliament.
(Reporting by Padraic Halpin)
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