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Actually not that different from my proposal of a referendum. Instead the DUP want ANY border controls to be subject to the Northern Ireland Executive and Assembly agreement - where they have an effective veto. Thus any divergence between GB and N.I. simply will not be allowed to happen forcing the EU and IE to implement customs controls at the Irish border.

The problem with their proposal is that the Executive has not met for over two years because of an impasse between the two major parties - the DUP and Sinn Fein. Sinn Fein will never agree to its re-establishment if the purpose is simply to enable the DUP to block any divergence between N.I. and UK. - thus deepening community divisions still further.

Hence my proposal to extend the GFA's insistence that N. I. can only become part of a united Ireland by majority referendum vote to a circumstance where it can opt to become (or remain) part of the EU but remain part of the UK.

The DUP is playing a game here. They only got 28% of the vote in the 2017 Assembly elections and 36% in the Westminster elections. They lost the Brexit referendum 56-44% in N. Ireland and yet they are trying to impose their will on all in N. Ireland. They would therefore probably lose a N.I. referendum vote on EU membership, but successfully block it in the Executive (which requires explicit bi-community support).

But which is the greater constitutional change in N. Ireland, Brexit or some customs controls in the Irish Sea? I think my proposal of a referendum is fairer, less divisive, and won't block the re-establishment of power sharing in the interim. Brexit should not be driven entirely by one minority party but should require the support of a majority in all communities.

Basically my proposal just requires a simple agreement between UK/IE/EU that N.I. can rejoin the EU if a majority there vote in favour in a referendum to be held if no other means of keeping the Irish border has been agreed by end 2022. Alternatively, the agreement could stipulate that N.I. just rejoins the CUSM - thus also keeping the border open. The problem here is that N.I farmers would lose their CAP payments and farming would become uneconomic - their call...

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Jan 28th, 2019 at 01:18:30 PM EST
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