Bru­ton: hard bor­der if UK crashes out

Belfast Telegraph - - NEWS / POLITICS - BY HAR­RIET LINE

A HARD bor­der is in­evitable if there is no Brexit deal, a for­mer Taoiseach has said.

John Bru­ton, who was the Fine Gael premier from 199497, told BBC Ra­dio 4’s To­day pro­gramme: “There will be a hard bor­der if there is no agree­ment — that’s clear un­der EU law if you look at the paper that was pro­duced last month by the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion.

“It’s quite clear that there will have to be con­trol on the EU’s bor­ders and one of those EU bor­ders in the event that Bri­tain leaves the EU will be in Ire­land.”

And he sug­gested those op­posed to the con­tro­ver­sial back­stop pro­pos­als to avoid a hard bor­der on the is­land of Ire­land did not be­lieve there would ever be an “ac­cept­able agree­ment”.

Mr Bru­ton also said Sinn Fein’s re­fusal to take its seats in West­min­ster and voice its con­cerns over Brexit is “a great shame, it’s a tragedy” de­spite the “most se­ri­ous threats to the po­si­tion of North­ern na­tion­al­ists”.

“I think the record of Sinn Fein MPs not tak­ing their seats in Par­lia­ment has been ex­tremely bad,” he added.

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