The Irish border remains a major sticking point in Brexit talks
The Irish border remains a major sticking point in Brexit talks
Arlene Foster at the DUP conference
30 Ноября, 2017, 14:00
The EU has named the border as one of three issues on which "sufficient progress" must be made in order to allow progress to talks on a future trade agreement with Britain after it leaves the bloc in 2019. "What would really solve the problem - and it would be in everyone's interest - would be if Ireland left [the European Union also]".
The Department for Exiting the EU (DExEU) refused to comment on a report in The Times that British negotiators had put forward a proposal to devolve powers to Northern Ireland to enable "customs convergence" with the Republic in areas such as agriculture and energy in an attempt to break the deadlock.
"Until the referendum the process of cross-border cooperation and intervention on both sides of the border was on the same trajectory and had been depoliticized as a part of the Good Friday agreement, in which the United Kingdom and Ireland stated their relationship as partners in the EU".
Some British politicians have become very critical of Ireland's stance on this issue and one even suggested that there should be a hard border and that Ireland should pay for it.
She must reject that offer because she lost her parliamentary majority in the election she needlessly called last June, and remains in power only thanks to the votes of the Democratic Unionist Party - i.e., the hard-line Protestants of Northern Ireland.
Leading Brexiteer ministers are believed to have insisted an increased cash offer must come with a guarantee on a trade deal in the second phase of Brexit talks.
They also asked people on the street to see if they could draw Ireland's border with Northern Ireland.
A UK Government source added: 'In return for making progress on the withdrawal agreement the European Union will move on transition by the end of January with a fair wind, ' they said.
"We need political solutions now and we are not getting them from the UK Government".
The Prime Minister said: "As the European Union themselves have said, nothing is agreed until everything is agreed". If EU governments accept it, the next step is for them to declare at their Dec 14 summit that talks can now start on the future relationship between Britain and its biggest trading partner. We don't know this kind of thing. They could dream that with all the coming and going across an open border, the two parts of Ireland would grow closer and eventually reunite. If that meeting produces "sufficient progress" on three key European Union conditions - a financial settlement, rights of expatriate citizens and the Irish border - then leaders could give a green light to trade talks at a summit on December 14-15.
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