No smiling faces round the table in Hillsborough Castle yesterday if this picture is anything to go by.
Gordon Brown's 'rescue mission' for power sharing in Northern Ireland collapsed yesterday with the Prime Minister abandoning the talks and the Province's politicians trading insults over who was to blame.
Martin McGuinness said he was "deeply disappointed" while Peter Robinson, the DUP leader said he would not "accept any second-rate deal simply to get across the line to suit someone else's deadline".
Mr Brown denied that the three days he and Brian Cowen, the Taoiseach, spent conducting round-the-clock talks had been a waste of time.
"I don't think we've failed," he said. "I think we've made enormous progress. On Monday, quite honestly, the parties were not talking to each other."
Doesn't seem as if they are now either Mr Brown. Somehow I think you're already regretting this visit to Northern Ireland as I'm sure you intended to be puffing out your chest and announcing how you'd saved Northern Irish politics, but it was not to be. Instead you've had to bully them into submission by setting a deadline for the DUP and Sinn Fein to come to an agreement or you will publish your own proposals which they disregard at their peril.
Not even the help of the US secretary of state, Hilary Clinton, was able to save our Prime Minister in the last few days. Another failure to add to the list.
Never mind, today will be a better day now that the result of the Afghanistan conference has already been publicised.
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