Sinn Féin issues Brexit breakthrough statement

Comprehensive party response on the way

Dundalk Democrat

Reporter:

Dundalk Democrat

Gerry Adams

Louth Sinn Féin TD Gerry Adams

SINN FEIN has issued a statement in response to a request from the Dundalk Democrat about the party's reaction to the Brexit breakthrough.

According to a Sinn Féin spokesperson, Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald is currently meeting with Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Simon Coveney and Sinn Féin leader in the Northern Ireland Assembly Michelle O’Neill is speaking directly with British Prime Minister Theresa May.

This is the Sinn Féin statement as follows:

"This agreement represents a degree of progress, as it sets out principles relating to Brexit, including recognising the unique circumstances in Ireland, and the need to ensure there is no hardening of the border and that the Good Friday Agreement and rights of citizens are protected.

"In the lead up to this agreement, Sinn Féin called for clarity and certainty and the Irish government stated there would be no leap into the dark, no hard border, and the Good Friday Agreement and rights of citizens would be protected.

"What we have today is an agreement in principle, with no detail and a promise of clarity and certainty in the next phases.

"There remain major questions as to how we turn these statements principle into working practice.

"Including how we ensure there is no hardening of the border, how we protect our economy, business and trade, now the rights of citizens will be protected with continued access to European courts and how we will sustain and build North-South cooperation and protect the Good Friday Agreement in all its parts.

"Sinn Féin has called for special status for the North within the EU including remaining within the Single market and Customs union. This is the sensible and achievable way forward.

"While there is progress with agreement on principles we should remember that the British government are in default of existing agreements and, as always, the devil will be in the detail including ensuring that the north remains in the single market and customs union."

Sinn Féin intends to issue the party's comprehensive response in the coming hours.