Sunday 18 August 2019

Revealed: New poll shows Ireland's views on the EU

French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, April 2, 2019. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer
French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, April 2, 2019. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer
Ryan Nugent

Ryan Nugent

A majority of Irish people believe the country should be part of increased EU defence and security co-operation, a new poll has revealed.

The Red C poll for European Movement (EM) in Ireland also states that 68pc would back an increased involvement from Ireland in EU defence.

Last year French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel backed the idea of an EU army.

And while Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has previously ruled out joining a European army and wouldn't be contributing to a European defence budget, he said Ireland would want to be part of its common security and defence policy.

Elsewhere in the poll, more than nine out of every 10 Irish people think Ireland should remain in the EU - with 86pc also backing the Euro's positive impact on the country.

Support for EU membership has risen almost every year since it was as low as 81pc in 2013 and now stands at 93pc.

The Red C poll for the European Movement (EM) in Ireland also revealed that half of Irish people believe a United Ireland is more likely on the back of Brexit.

The annual survey indicated that 58pc felt the Brexit saga had improved their opinion of the EU, with the same percentage believing Ireland should be part of increased EU defence and security cooperation.

Reacting to the survey results, Noelle O'Connell of EM Ireland said "last year's poll showed positivity for Ireland's EU membership at an impressive high, so it is unexpected but welcome to see that support has risen yet again in 2019".

"Another notable result is the strong support for the Euro 20 years on from its introduction in Ireland," she said.

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