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Conway-Walsh welcomes First Minister Sturgeon to the Seanad

29 November, 2016 - by Rose Conway-Walsh

Sinn Féin Seanad leader Rose Conway-Walsh welcomed Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to the Seanad today on behalf of the party. Speaking in the Seanad, the Senator from Mayo highlighted the common cause that Scotland and Ireland have in preventing the collateral damage of Brexit damaging those regions that chose not to leave the EU.

Senator Conway-Walsh said:

“It is indeed a great honour to welcome First Minister Sturgeon to Ireland and to this House on behalf of the Sinn Féin party.

“We welcome you as the leader of a nation and people with whom we in Ireland enjoy a long and enduring affinity, as close neighbours and good friends.

“We share a strong Gaelic heritage, language and a Celtic culture of which we are both rightly proud.

“Today First Minister, your visit is about the future and how both our nations will strengthen the bond that ties us, politically, culturally and economically.

“Sinn Féin has had a longstanding policy of critical engagement with the EU where we support measures that are in Ireland’s interests and oppose and campaign for progressive reform on those which are bad for Ireland. 

“However, there is absolutely no denying that the unilateral decision being taken at this time by the British Government to withdraw from membership of the EU and drag Scotland and the North of Ireland with it, without our consent is disastrous and profoundly undemocratic.

“The British government is on a collision course with the EU in which our stability and economic progress are regarded as collateral damage.

“We believe it is in our interests to find common cause with regions, such as Scotland, who share our objective to remain and work together to argue our case in forthcoming negotiations on Brexit.

“I commend the leadership of First Minister Sturgeon in standing up for Scotland’s national interests in this regard.

“Scotland’s future must be in Scotland’s hands - and I call on this House to extend our solidarity and support to the Scottish Government and the Scottish people who democratically voted to remain, and with the North of Ireland who did likewise.  They must not be taken out of the EU against their wishes.” 

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