Gerry Adams reiterates call for ‘special status’ for NI

Gerry Adams
Gerry Adams

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams has said “designated special status” for Northern Ireland is “an imaginitive solution” to the border problem after Brexit.

Mr Adams made his comments in an address to the Dublin parliament on the day of the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier’s visit to Dublin.

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Gerry Adams said special status for Northern Ireland would “not affect the constitutional status of the North”. He also called for Ireland to have a “veto on any agreement reached between the EU and the British government that does not include this position”.

He added: “Designated special status is the best and only way to ensure that the entire island of Ireland remains within the European Union. It is an imaginative solution that addresses the complexities of the problem.”

SDLP leader Colum Eastwood, meanwhile, met with the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator in Dublin yesterday. Afterwards, in a statement, Mr Eastwood said: “Where Theresa May has run a coach and horses through the delicate and complex circumstances in Northern Ireland, EU leaders have demonstrated an immense understanding of this place and a willingness to protect the progress we have made.

“Michel Barnier gets it. He understands that the Tory attempt to press for a hard Brexit and a hard border in Ireland will devastate not only border communities but our wider economy.”

The SDLP leader said his party would fight “tooth and nail” against a “hard Brexit”.