Sunday 24 September 2017

'British exit from European Union could have significant risks to political stability in Northern Ireland', warns UK ambassador

Dominick Chilcott. Photo: Damien Eagers
Dominick Chilcott. Photo: Damien Eagers
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

A British exit from the European Union could pose significant risks to political stability in Northern Ireland and have implications for Anglo-Irish relations, the British ambassador to Ireland said today.

The reforms David Cameron's UK government is seeking from Europe are achievable, and if secured, the planned referendum on Britain's European a union membership is eminently winnable, UK Ambassador Dominick Chilcott said.

He made the comments during a speech at business group ISME's annual conference at the RDS in Dublin.

Limits on the rights of EU migrants sought by the Britain need to to be discussed because of unintended consequences of labour mobility rights, he said.

Discussion on the topic has been sidelined, including for fear of being deemed racist, he said.

However, the ambassador said it "is unhealthy to sweep under the carpet concerns re immigration."

Other concessions sought by Britain include an acknowledgment that the European Union is a "multi currency" zone, he said.

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