Published: Sun, November 11, 2018
Global | By Craig Ferguson

Irish party accuses Mae of violating the procedures Brexit

Irish party accuses Mae of violating the procedures Brexit

Ireland's Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said a deal between Britain and the European Union over Britain's exit from the bloc was possible in weeks, despite continued political haggling over the future of the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Speaking at the British-Irish Council summit on the Isle of Man, Mr Varadkar said he was hopeful a Brexit deal could be done by the end of the year but it would not amount to a "clean break" as talks would have to continue.

His remarks come after DUP leader Arlene Foster expressed alarm at the contents of a letter from Mrs May which her party is interpreting as creating the potential for a post Brexit border in the Irish Sea.

DUP leader Arlene Foster says alarm bells are ringing after she received a letter from Theresa May, suggesting the European Union is pushing for a border down the Irish Sea in the event of no deal. "From her letter, it appears the PM is wedded to the idea of a border down the Irish Sea with NI in the EU SM regulatory regime".

In the letter, obtained by the Times, Mrs May said: "I am clear that I could not accept there being any circumstances or conditions in which that "backstop to the backstop", which would break up the United Kingdom customs territory, could come in to force".

The DUP are ignoring the evidence from our business community, our farming industry and from citizens the length and breadth of Ireland, who support a bespoke arrangement that meets our particular needs and reflects our particular realities.

DUP Brexit spokesman Sammy Wilson told BBC Radio 4's Today programme "we want to trust the Prime Minister" but "you have to judge any promise by what is actually delivered in an agreement".

DUP leader Arlene Foster (right) with DUP MP Nigel Dodds.

But Brussels appears set to insist on a Northern Ireland-only "backstop to the backstop" in case negotiations on a wider United Kingdom approach break down or any time limit on it expires.

The leak of the letter is seen by some observers, as well as the DUP, as part of a laying of the ground by May for a showdown with the party over checks in British ports or factories in Northern Ireland or Britain.

Britain's culture minister Jeremy Wright arrives In Downing Street.

They said May had earlier promised them it never would - and they threatened to vote against the agreement.

The EU's proposed fall-back position to avoid a hard border - the so-called backstop - would effectively keep Northern Ireland aligned with Brussels's customs union and single market.

In it, Ms. May reportedly tried to assure her allies that she would never allow a Brexit deal proposal offered by Brussels to "come into force".

The five page letter was sent three days ago - in response to a letter from the DUP outlining the party's expectations for a Brexit deal.

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