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Brexit border guarantees a nonsense in absence of customs union - David Cullinane TD

5 February, 2018 - by David Cullinane TD

Sinn Féin's spokesperson for Brexit, David Cullinane TD has said there will be a border on the island of Ireland if Britain leaves the customs union.

He has called he Government's cast iron guarantees "meaningless" in such a scenario.

Deputy Cullinane said:

"Less than eight weeks ago the Taoiseach and Tániste stood up in the Dáil and sold the Irish people a pup.

"They said that symmetry of regulations in a handful of sectors would avoid a hard border.

"Leo Varadkar called it a 'cast-iron guarantee'.

"The EU Commission called it a 'gentlemen's agreement'

"I voiced my concerns at the time, seeing it as a fudge, and that is what it has turned out to be.

"The Taoiseach and Tániste have not secured anything unique for the island of Ireland.

"The future of this island is still subject to Theresa May's cabinet battles and Boris Johnson's leadership ambitions.

"There will be a border if the hard Brexiteers get their way and Britain leaves the customs union.

"This is why we need special status for the north.

"That means, in practical terms, the north staying in the customs union and single market, protection of the Good Friday Agreement in all its parts - which means the Good Friday Agreement staying in the European Union and continuing to enjoy the authority of the European courts.

"And it also means protecting the rights of citizens and people who live in the north of Ireland who are Irish and European citizens and should be able to enjoy the same level of rights after Brexit.

"This needs to be the government's focus going forward."

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