Wednesday 19 December 2018

Gerry Adams: Varadkar brings a 'better approach' to the Northern Ireland issues

Gerry Adams (left) with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at a St Patrick's Day breakfast event at Gracie Mansion in New York Photo: Niall Carson/PA Wire
Gerry Adams (left) with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at a St Patrick's Day breakfast event at Gracie Mansion in New York Photo: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Shona Murray

Former Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams says Leo Varadkar has brought “a better approach” to the issues of Northern Ireland and Brexit, than his predecessor, Enda Kenny.

Mr Adams is in Queens University Belfast for the twentieth anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement.

He said he appreciated Mr Varadkar’s approach as being “in the interests of the entire island".

He added that there was a “certain irony that the Fine Gael leader has a better position [on Northern Ireland] than the Fianna Fail leader”, Micheal Martin.

Gerry Adams was responding to an interview with former unionist leader David Trimble in which Mr Trimble criticised the leadership of Leo Varadkar, saying his takeover as Taoiseach has not “been a change for the better”.

Speaking on the Sean O’Rourke show on RTE, he said “I don't think it's been a change for the better".

He declined to expand on his comments, saying; "I think I've said enough."

Mr Trimble subsequently cancelled some of his confirmed media appearances in Belfast today.

Meanwhile, Gerry Adams - the senior Republican negotiator during Good Friday, also castigated the British government for its apparent disregard for the island of Ireland by pursuing Brexit.

“The Tories have engaged in this Brexit catastrophe without any thought at all for the people on the island of Ireland,” he said.

Other senior figures due to participate at the commemoration at Queens today include Senator George Mitchell, former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, and former US president Bill Clinton.

Gerry Adams reiterated his aspiration for a united Ireland.

However, he said he would want it to happen by way of a strong consensus where unionists also have “ownership” over it.

“Sensible people; and I think I’m fairly sensible sometimes” would want to see a united Ireland “that the unionists have ownership of,” he said.

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