Critical talks are being held in Belfast and London to determine the future of Northern Ireland's power-sharing deal.
The heads of the British and Irish governments will meet at Downing Street to try to help rescue Northern Ireland's power-sharing deal.
At Stormont, Sinn Fein Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness will hold an urgent meeting with Democratic Unionist leader and First Minister Peter Robinson.
Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams warned recently that if agreement cannot be reached on devolving policing and justice powers from London to Belfast the institutions can no longer continue.
Irish premier Brian Cowen believes the situation is serious and begins his session with Prime Minister Gordon Brown as the pace of negotiations over the state of the peace process steps up.
Mr Robinson last week said progress was being made and republicans were creating an unnecessary political crisis.
Despite a measure of agreement among both power-sharing partners in Northern Ireland that policing has to be devolved at some stage, they have sparred over when that will take place.
There is also a dispute over the handling of controversial loyal order parades.
The DUP wants to scrap the Parades Commission, which adjudicates on and places conditions on some of the most contentious marches, but Sinn Fein accused the unionist party of giving the Orange Order a talks veto.
Mr Cowen's visit comes just 11 days after his last discussions with Mr Brown in London.