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Some Tory politicians in the UK have expressed shock that Ireland is not reciprocating the UK decision of not requiring people travelling from Ireland to Britain to go into quarantine. Despite the Common Travel Area, Ireland will continue to require all incoming travellers to quarantine for 2 weeks with some exceptions for air crews and travellers from N. Ireland only.

N. Ireland has just announced a lockdown exit strategy very similar to that of Ireland, and quite different to Boris Johnson's "stay alert" strategy.

With the British government now finally, belatedly, and reluctantly also confirming that Brexit will require customs control posts at N. Ireland ports for all trade from Britain and non-EU countries, N. Ireland's position as more closely allied to Ireland in economic and epidemiological terms is becoming increasingly obvious.

The crazier British policy gets - on Brexit, Covid-19, and trade relations with the rest of the world, the more N. Ireland's objective interests will align with the Republic. This is not even all that controversial in unionist circles.

British government attempts to whip up sectarian tensions over the citing of an EU office in Belfast to oversee customs controls have met with a muted response. Belfast has always had a US consulate, more recently a Chinese one, and the EU has also maintained an information office there.

Unionists know that if they are to continue to receive EU funds for the peace process and border areas, together with full access to the Customs Union and Single Market, some EU presence in Belfast is inevitable, and many will welcome it.

In response to a recent court case every person born in Northern Ireland will also be regarded as a European Union citizen for immigration purposes, following a significant climbdown by the British Home Office. An EU Consulate to represent their interests will therefore be required in any case.

Some unionists are also becoming wise to Tory attempts to whip up sectarian tensions as part of their Brexit  negotiating strategy with the EU. Reprehensible as that strategy is, it will buy Britain no favours from Ireland or the EU. Cooperating on N. Ireland customs posts and a Belfast EU office is not going to be allowed to become a negotiating chip in Britain's attempts to extract a more favourable trade deal from the EU.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri May 15th, 2020 at 01:18:45 PM EST
Birth tourism to Northern Ireland from GB if the rule holds?

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Fri May 15th, 2020 at 07:42:58 PM EST
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