Speaking at the Irish School of Ecumenics, he said: “In the absence of an ongoing dialogue to restore devolution, it’s critical that the British Irish Intergovernmental Conference is formed.
“That is the first step outlines in the Good Friday Agreement, there is no basis for resisting that position.
“The only alternative to that position is Unionist majority rule through a DUP/Tory committee at Westminster – a scenario which threatens to leave northern nationalism, and everyone who doesn’t support the DUP, powerless.
“That simply can’t be allowed to happen.
“I am calling on the British and Irish Governments, as part of the intergovernmental conference, to agree a package of legislation and implement it.
“Such a package should include much of the draft accommodation that was agreed between the DUP and Sinn Féin.
“That means legislation for an Irish Language Act and an Ulster Scots Act. It should include the establishment of legacy bodies and the release of inquest resources.
“And I’m also proposing that it should include reform of the Petition of Concern so that progressive measures such as marriage equality can finally be introduced in the North.
“That positive intervention forms part of their governmental duty as guardians and guarantors of the Agreement.
“There is a time for a watching brief and there is a time for facilitation.
“This is a time for the guarantors to actively and positively intervene. The public in the North will thank them for it.
“In doing so, they will be acting in the interests of all our people.”