Sir Jeffrey said,
“Whether Northern Ireland’s place in the United Kingdom is restored by a negotiated outcome or by Parliament legislating, is a matter for the Government. We hope the negotiations can produce an outcome which is acceptable to unionists, but we are mindful that we tried working devolution for two years and negotiating at the same time only for Brussels to rebuff any progress in that period.
I note the Prime Minister’s commitment today to find an outcome in talks which replicates the Northern Ireland Protocol Bill. The Government must recognise, that the checks are but a symptom that Northern Ireland is subject to a different set of laws imposed upon us by a foreign entity without any say or vote by any elected representative of the people of Northern Ireland.
We set seven tests last year. That is the yardstick we will use to measure any proposed solution. Devolution can have a stable and enduring future, but it must be built on solid foundations. Powersharing without unionist support is doomed to failure.”