Friday 21 July 2017

Most want us to do more for EU defence

Six-in-10 people here believe Ireland should be part of increased EU security and defence cooperation. Photo: Getty Image
Six-in-10 people here believe Ireland should be part of increased EU security and defence cooperation. Photo: Getty Image
Colm Kelpie

Colm Kelpie

Six-in-10 people here believe Ireland should be part of increased EU security and defence cooperation, a survey marking Europe Day has found.

Support is highest among unemployed people, at 70pc, followed closely by full-time students and pensioners.

Backing for Irish membership of the EU remains high at 88pc, according to the survey by the European Movement.

A similar percentage believes that Ireland has benefited from being a member of the EU.

The vast majority of people also feel UK voters made a mistake when they backed Brexit.

Noelle O'Connell, executive director of EM Ireland, said it is striking that across all respondents a majority of people agree that Ireland should be part of increased EU defence and security co-operation.

"Whilst defence policy remains of course a national competency, this poll result may indicate an evolution of thinking on the part of Irish people in light of increased global security concerns, and a more challenging environment for countering terrorism which, as we know, crosses all borders and jurisdictions," Ms O'Connell said.

European Movement Ireland commissioned Red C to conduct this poll in the run-up to the first anniversary next month of the Brexit vote.

Just over 1,000 people were surveyed late last month.

Some 82pc of people believe the UK should have voted to remain in the EU.

Irish Independent

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