DUP leader airs frustration over post-Brexit NI security arrangements

Nigel Dodds
Nigel Dodds

Ministers have pledged they will "come up with the solution in due course" to the security implications of a no-deal Brexit in Northern Ireland.

The comment came in the face of repeated questions from DUP leader Nigel Dodds, who was frustrated at the lack of action following a warning from Northern Ireland's top police officer over Brexit planning.

Chief Constable George Hamilton said in June that he feels "in the dark" because of a lack of information, and said he did not know to who he should send a business case asking for additional resources for border duties after Brexit.

Mr Dodds, speaking in the Commons, reacted with annoyance when told by Northern Ireland Minister Shailesh Vara that the Government would be "issuing guidance in future".

He said: "With the greatest of respect, we're not asking about issuing guidance, we're asking about the allocation of resources.

"So can the minister, and I really want to press him on this since it is a very big issue and it's impact in terms of resourcing for policing in Northern Ireland more widely.

"What is he going to do and the Government, this has been on their table for many months now."

Mr Vara responded: "I can give an assurance that the Secretary of State actually spoke with the chief constable this morning, we're in regular dialogue and we're considering the proposals that he has put forward.

"We are considering the proposals, that's what I can say and we hope to come up with the solution in due course."

Later in the question session, Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley was asked about what moves had been made to re-establish an executive at Stormont.

She said: "I'm acutely aware of the deep frustration and difficulties faced by the people of Northern Ireland and the urgent need to re-establish a locally elected democratically accountable devolved government.

"I remain in close contact with the five main political parties and the Irish government where possible."