Sir Jeffrey: Removal of Irish Sea border fundamental to protect progress in NI

DUP Leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP has said removal of the Irish Sea Border is fundamental to protect the foundations of political progress in Northern Ireland.

He was commenting after a meeting with US Senator Chris Murphy today.

Commenting, Sir Jeffrey said,

"Over the weekend Mr Murphy and Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey wrote to the Prime Minister outlining their support for the Belfast Agreement. Central to the Belfast Agreement was the principle of consent, something which the Northern Ireland Protocol fundamentally undermines.

You can have the Belfast Agreement or you can have the Protocol, you cannot have both. The Protocol is wreaking constitutional, economic and social damage upon Northern Ireland, all of which are harmful to stability and progress here. Anyone who wants to offer constructive and positive support to Northern Ireland must encourage the European Union to ensure Northern Ireland's place within the UK internal market is restored and the Irish Sea border is removed.

I want to see a negotiated solution between the UK and European Union which can resolve the huge problems created by the Protocol. However, if the EU continues to reject such progress then it will fall upon the UK Government to take unilateral action. That action would not adversely affect the Belfast Agreement, but would be taken to restore the fundamental planks upon which political progress in Northern Ireland has been built.

There is not a single unionist representative who supports the Northern Ireland Protocol. No-one with a serious interest in Northern relend could believe that is a platform on which to make progress."

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