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United Ireland moving closer to fulfilment, but Government needs to do more - Carthy

29 April, 2017 - by Matt Carthy MEP

Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy said has said that with each day that passes, the aspiration for a United Ireland is moving towards fulfilment.

He was speaking after EU leaders today guaranteed that the North would resume full membership of the European Union as part of a united Ireland.

He added however that the Irish Government had fallen short in its negotiation strategy by failing to seek designated special status for the North of Ireland post-Brexit.

Matt Carthy said:

“With each day that passes, political developments in Ireland, Britain and Europe demonstrate that the aspiration for a United Ireland is moving ultimately towards fulfilment.

“The provision for the North of Ireland to immediately resume full membership of the European Union following a successful referendum on Irish unity is another step in this direction.

“Today’s announcement reinforces the provisions of the Good Friday Agreement regarding the peaceful political route to a United Ireland.

"Sinn Féin believes however that more was achievable by the Irish Government in relation to the EU Council guidelines which fall short of the wording already agreed by the European Parliament.

"The Irish Government got what it sought but did not ask for enough. Crucially it did not seek support for designated special status for the North of Ireland within the EU post-Brexit. This was a major mistake.

"I believe that this can yet be achieved, if the Government makes it a priority objective in forthcoming negotiations.

"It is in Ireland's national interest that both parts of the island remain within the Single Market and that vital EU funding for peacebuilding and economic and social development continues.

"Sinn Féin will continue to press the Government on this issue and to work with others in Ireland and across Europe to achieve it.

“In the wake of the declaration that the North will immediately resume full EU membership in the event of a United Ireland, it is imperative that the Irish Government, and all parties who claim to support a United Ireland, work with Sinn Féin to agree clear criteria for the delivery of a unity referendum.

" It is especially important that we work together to set out an agreed vision as to what a United Ireland will mean for communities across the island so that we can win the referendum and begin to deliver upon the potential of our country".

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