The Dail has been given a commitment that Ireland will not be used as a bargaining chip in the EU/UK Brexit negotiations.
The comment came from the European Parliament’s Brexit Coordinator Guy Verhofstadt who is addressing three Oireachtas Committees in a special sitting in the Dáil Chamber, in what has been described as a “milestone visit” by Clare’s Junior Minister.
Guy Verhofstadt said he was in the Dail to deliver a message of solidarity and to make it clear that Ireland would not be used as a bargaining chip in the Brexit negotiations.
Mr Verhofstadt will have an important role as EU parliament coordinator as MEPs have a binding vote on the final Brexit deal.
He admitted that Northern Ireland hasn’t been on EU TV screens since the peace of 1998 but he also spoke of an epiphany he had while watching Northern Irish cows walk across the border.
Mr Verhofstadt said peace in Northern Ireland is not just an Irish success but also an EU success.
He added that no hard border will be allowed but what should happen between North and South is a solution the British need to craft for a problem they created.
Clare’s Junior Minister has described today’s meeting as a “milestone visit”, saying a lot of work has yet to be done.
Minister of State Pat Breen says it’s a complicated process.