DUP could be made go to talks on Brexit
Published 07/10/2016 | 02:30
Former minister Liz O'Donnell said the Taoiseach could have compelled the DUP to attend Brexit talks under a mechanism created under the Good Friday Agreement.
First Minister Arlene Foster has repeatedly turned down the Taoiseach's invitation to attend an 'All Ireland forum' involving politicians and civilians north and south of the border.
In today's Irish Independent Ms O'Donnell says that there were "In my view, a more appropriate official forum for such serious debate is the North South Ministerial Council, established under Strand 2 of the Good Friday Agreement," Ms O'Donnell says. "Using the institutions established under the Belfast Agreement, such as the British Irish Inter-governmental Conference and the British Irish Council, would locate the Brexit discussions in the appropriate formal context.
"A broadly based, all-island talking shop which does not include the DUP and which has no statutory or legal basis is a poor substitute. Unionists are obliged to attend the North South Council. The council was established to meet specifically 'to consider institutional or cross-sectoral matters, including in relation to the EU and to resolve disagreement'."