Brexit and Irish unity by Michelle O’Neill

SINN Féin organised a public debate,
‘Brexit, the Good Friday Agreement and
Irish Unity’ in Brighton, at a fringe meeting
of the British Labour party’s annual
conference.
The room was at maximum capacity with
attendees spilling out into the corridor,
demonstrating the marked increase in
interest in the case for Irish unity.
This event was chaired by Sinn Féin
MP, Mickey Brady, with other panelists
including, Stephen Pound MP, Labour’s
Shadow Parliamentary Under Secretary
of State for the north of Ireland and
commentator and journalist Dawn
Foster.
Addressing the event Sinn Féin’s Vice
President, Michelle O’Neill, said a no deal
Brexit is incompatible with the ‘Good
Friday Agreement’ and if it occurs then a
referendum on Irish Unity offers the only
solution.
Michelle O’Neill said:
“A no deal Brexit and the Good Friday
Agreement are mutually incompatible. It’s
as simple as that.
“There is a deal on the table and it
includes the Irish backstop which must
be maintained as an insurance policy and
guarantee to protect peace, jobs and the
all-Ireland economy and structures.
“In the event of a no deal Brexit,
however, a referendum on a united Ireland
is an obvious option which must be on the
table.
“There is a growing sense that
circumstances are now rapidly changing
which will inevitably lead to the final
break-up of the current constitutional
structures.
“People from across this society,
even those of a British identity, are now
seriously questioning whether there are
any merits of staying within the union
after Brexit.
“The Good Friday Agreement provides
a peaceful democratic pathway to Irish
Unity.
“The issue of Irish Unity has taken on
a new dynamic because of Brexit. This
cannot be ignored.
“The political momentum is moving in
that direction.
“The EU has said in the event of
Irish reunification the North would
automatically rejoin the EU.
“People are coming to the Irish Unity
conversation not to become republicans
and nationalists, but to remain Europeans

and the opportunity to stay in the
European Union, through separation from
Britain.
“It can no longer be dismissed as a pipe
dream.
“Not only is this possible, but it is
inevitable in the time ahead.

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