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Relations 'fraying' between Ireland and Britain

05:19 Sun Nov 04, 2018

Leo Varadkar says Ireland is entering into a potentially difficult period, even if there is an agreement

Taken from/By: BBC News
Report by: BBC News

The Irish prime minister says Brexit is fraying relations between Ireland and Britain.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said it had also “undermined” the Good Friday Agreement (GFA).

The GFA was signed by political parties in Northern Ireland in 1998 and was aimed at establishing peace after 30 years of The Troubles.

The Irish border is one of the biggest sticking points in the Brexit negotiations.

“Anything that pulls the communities apart in Northern Ireland undermines the Good Friday Agreement, and anything that pulls Britain and Ireland apart undermines that relationship,” said Mr Varadkar on RTE’s Marian Finucane programme.
Earlier, the chair of the Republic of Ireland’s Senate Brexit Committee said a return to a hard border threatened the peace process.

Senator Neale Richmond told pro-Brexit Conservative MP Owen Paterson on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that plans for solving the border dispute using “existing practical systems” was “completely unfeasible”.

Brexit talks have reached an impasse over the EU’s “backstop” plan, which would see Northern Ireland effectively remaining in the customs union and single market unless alternative arrangements were found to prevent a hard border.

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