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Taoiseach Varadkar must forcefully fight for Ireland’s interests at European Council meeting - Mary Lou McDonald TD

21 June, 2017 - by Mary Lou McDonald TD


Speaking in the Dáil today ahead of Taoiseach Varadkar’s first European Council meeting Sinn Fein Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald urged Mr Varadkar to “forcefully fight for Ireland’s interests” at the meeting.

Teachta McDonald said;

“Taoiseach, given the disastrous impact Brexit will have on the island of Ireland, it is more important than ever now that the formal Brexit negotiation process has started that we secure designated special status for the North within the EU and that the Irish government joins in the efforts to secure that.

“I don’t think any movie has been filmed in the European Council offices, so you will hopefully refrain from the dodgy movie comments.

“But you must forcefully fight for Ireland’s interests.

“You must inform your European counterparts that should the North be forcibly removed from the EU against the democratically expressed wishes of the people, that this will undoubtedly have a devastating impact on nearly every aspect of life both North and South.

“Sinn Féin has also put forward a range of fiscal measures which we believe the Irish government should pursue in order to mitigate the disastrous impact of Brexit, which you must also bring to the table.

“Taoiseach, we wish you the best at your first European Council meeting, but we will be watching closely.

“There is an appreciation at EU level for the unique challenges that Brexit poses for us here in Ireland.

"You must harness that and represent the interests of all the people of Ireland.

“Taoiseach, ditch the invisible boarder line and focus on ensuring special status for the North within the EU is secured, so that no border will be placed on this island, because no border is acceptable.”

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