Michelle O'Neill and Emma Little-Pengelly.

EDITORIAL: And Finally.....

Northern Ireland has been waiting for this. Waiting not just for the two years since the last Assembly election, but waiting since its very foundation.

And what has been awaited is a power sharing political structure that actually more or less reflects the place while at the same time having an opportunity of making life better for all in the Six Counties, regardless of religious or political persuasion.

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The North, as we all know, has been through its troubles, and not those that exploded in the 1960s. It has been unsettled and troubled since partition.

But as a result of a slew of agreements, accords, frameworks and elections, we have arrived at a moment when all the parties who occupy seats at Stormont can embrace the opportunity of working together for the benefit of all. And potentially for a much longer time than heretofore.

And this despite the giant spanner in the works that is Brexit.

At the head of the new political dispensation are two women. They are from opposite ends of the North political spectrum, yes, but both First Minister Michelle O'Neill and the DUP's Emma Little-Pengelly, who will serve as Deputy First Minister, seem determined to make things work.

In O'Neill's case she can be confident of backing from her colleagues in Sinn Féin. Little-Pengelly takes up her post as a result of some skillful work by her party leader Jeffrey Donaldson, but the DUP is home to a few individuals who are not jumping for joy at the prospect of sharing power with Sinn Féin.

Meantime, however, with so many everyday issues affecting people - not least those public servants who felt it necessary to recently strike for a day - O'Neill and Little-Pengelly will have their collective work cut out and should get the backing of the great bulk of the Assembly.

We wish them the very best of luck.

Meanwhile, It was heartening to hear again from those U.S. legislators who have taken such a consistent interest in the affairs of Ireland, the entire island, and have been urging the return of power sharing, a logical follow on to the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.

This is a big moment, one deserving of big headlines. Let's hope they remain at least mostly positive.