European Union must be in deal-making mode - DUP Leader

08 March 2019

Following the Prime Minister’s speech in Grimsby, DUP Leader Arlene Foster MLA said,

Arlene Foster MLA

Leader of the Democratic Unionist Party

Arlene Foster

“We want to see a sensible deal between the United Kingdom and the European Union. One which works for every part of the United Kingdom.

Parliament spoke with a clear voice on 29 January.  The backstop was the problem.  The Prime Minister committed to secure legally binding changes.  She must deliver on that commitment.

A sensible deal requires the EU27 to be reasonable and pragmatic.  The European Union must be in deal-making mode.

The draft Withdrawal Agreement fails to win our support as it would undermine the economic and constitutional integrity of the United Kingdom. 

For those in the EU who value the peace process in Northern Ireland, they must understand that a new east-west border between Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom is no more acceptable than a new north-south border.

We want a deal which works for Northern Ireland as well as our neighbours in the Republic of Ireland.  It is possible but will require a fresh approach by Dublin and Brussels.

I am not convinced that an extension makes a deal any more likely.  In my experience, a firm deadline always makes a deal more likely in the closing moments of any negotiation. Delay for the sake of delay is not the answer our electorate wants. 

Those who talk of a second referendum only serve to devalue and undermine the democratic will of communities across the United Kingdom.  Ignoring the will of the people as expressed in 2016, would irreparably damage our democracy.”

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