Wednesday 29 January 2020

Foreigner-hating 'Brits' have created Brexit crisis for us - Quinn

Ruairi Quinn
Ruairi Quinn

Colm Kelpie

Brexit is the biggest crisis to face the State since the onset of World War II, former Labour minister Ruairi Quinn has said.

Mr Quinn said he believed there would be a form of hard border because the rest of Europe is unlikely to allow a special deal between Ireland and the UK.

"Brexit, from Ireland's a point of view, is the biggest crisis this country has faced since 1939," Mr Quinn said.

"And we don't have a government. We've got the weakest political structure the country has ever seen," he claimed.

Mr Quinn, who stepped down as Minister for Education in 2014 and did not seek re-election this year, said the UK vote will lead to a so-called 'hard' Brexit, which essentially means the UK will severe ties with the EU and not end up with some form of access to the Single Market.

"It means the Brits, or actually the English, hate foreigners. It didn't stop them creating an empire, but they hate foreigners,"he said.

The former Labour TD was speaking at a Brexit-related seminar organised by investment and financial services advisors Tier One.

Mr Quinn said the English were putting their prosperity at risk to keep out migrants. He also said he expected a hard border between the UK and Ireland.

"We are looking at a hard border, either down the middle of the Irish Sea, or somewhere across the island. I cannot see at the present point in time that the other member states, and it will only take one to disagree, are going to allow us to have some kind of special arrangement and a penetrable border," Mr Quinn said.

"That open door I don't think is going to be allowed for a whole host of reasons, and we're going to have a serious problem as a consequence of that."

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