Government must ensure Ireland is not sidelined in Brexit talks- David Cullinane TD
Sinn Féin spokesperson for Brexit David Cullinane TD said today that the EU Commission's negotiating guidelines for the next round of Brexit talks, while welcome, contain elements of further delay and obfuscation with regard to the issue of the border and protecting the Good Friday Agreement in all its parts.
Deputy Cullinane said:
"The EU Commission said today that there will now be two strands to the parallel strand relating to Ireland in the next round of Brexit talks.
"This smacks of further kicking the can down the road.
"The Commission said that with regard to the 'gentlemen's agreement ' struck last month, some of it would be translated in the Withdrawal Agreement, other parts of it into the framework for the future relationship.
"This is worrying as the principles already agreed do little to secure the human rights and citizens' rights elements of the Good Friday Agreement.
"Nor do we know how the EU Commission and Britain intend to ensure that Irish citizens in the North will be able to avail of their rights as EU citizens while in the North, not just when they travel to the EU post-Brexit.
"The danger is that the issue of the North and the border will be allowed to slip off the agenda once the economic and trade interests of the larger EU countries come into play.
"We need to be vigilant end ensure that the current 'gentlemen's agreement' becomes a legal treaty, and that designated special status for the North is achieved."