Gregory Campbell: Fear of '˜hard border' has been used as Brexit bargaining chip and PM should confront it as an absurdity

The prime minister Theresa May should use her visit to the Northern Ireland border region this week as a suitable, if very belated, time to finish the nonsense of the possibility of a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Thursday, 19th July 2018, 9:59 am
Updated Thursday, 19th July 2018, 10:13 am
Prime Minister Theresa May leaves 10 Downing Street, London, on Wednesday July 18, 2018. She will be in Northern Ireland this week. Photo: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Given the repeated number of occasions when all those involved in the Brexit discussions have insisted they have no intention of wanting, having or insisting upon a ‘hard border’ it is time to put the fallacy out of its misery.

The simple facts are these, all those governments involved in the negotiations, whether in London, Brussels or Dublin have said there will be no such thing.

Those of us who would be directly affected by this mythical eventuality have also said we don’t want it.

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If some eventuality were to occur whereby it was to mysteriously appear, because of the hundreds of physical crossing points, roads, lanes and access points which exist, it would be the easiest exercise to avoid any checks.

Any checks would be circumvented hundreds of times, all day every day in any case.

This concept of a ‘hard border’ has been used as a bargaining chip that is totally and utterly valueless if confronted for the absurdity that it is.

That is what Prime Minister May should have done over a year ago and needs to do this week.

Gregory Campbell, MP East Londonderry