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Legal guarantees on the Backstop cannot be unpicked - David Cullinane TD

8 March, 2019 - by David Cullinane TD


Sinn Féin Brexit Spokesperson David Cullinane has said the legal guarantees contained in the Withdrawal Agreement cannot be unpicked. He said the Irish protocol in the Withdrawal Agreement is a legal document ratified by the Houses of the Oireachtas. 

Speaking this evening Deputy Cullinane said:

“The Irish Protocol or Backstop is a set of legal guarantees contained in the Withdrawal Agreement to avoid a hardening of the Border in Ireland and to protect the Good Friday Agreement. These guarantees cannot be unpicked or diluted to appease sections of the Tory party. 

“The simple reality is that a majority of people in the North voted to stay in the EU. At a bare minimum the North must stay in the EU Customs Union and the Single Market to protect the all-Island economy. This cannot be re-negotiated downwards. 

“While we acknowledge efforts by EU negotiators to offer clarifications to the British Government it is somewhat ironic given that the British Government negotiated and signed up to the legal provisions contained in the Withdrawal Agreement. 

“The British Government must cease with their futile efforts to seek legal changes to the Irish Backstop. They must instead honour the commitments they made to Ireland and stop pandering to hard Brexiteers. For their part the Irish Government and the EU need to continue to hold firm.”

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