Declan Breathnach TD
Louth (and East Meath)

17th July, 2018

Breathnach expresses alarm at British Government decision to accept Brexiteers’ amendments

– Move would make backstop unlawful –

Fianna Fáil TD for Louth and East Meath Declan Breathnach has expressed alarm and concern following the British government’s decision to accept four amendments put forward by hard-line Conservative and DUP Brexiteers, which effectively renders last week’s Chequers deal redundant.

“The amendments effectively make a backstop agreement illegal, and could see the UK crash out of the EU next March, the no deal, cliff edge Brexit we have worked hard to avoid.”

Deputy Breathnach commented, “The decision by the British Prime Minister to accept these amendments is extremely worrying and could end the possibility of securing a successful withdrawal agreement between the EU and UK. This move is the latest in a series of position changes by the British government. One of the amendments makes it unlawful for Northern Ireland to form a separate customs territory to the rest of the UK and has cast doubt over the ability of the negotiations to deliver on a legally binding backstop.”

“Without a backstop, there can be no withdrawal treaty or transition period, which would be utterly chaotic for all stakeholders concerned.

“It is extremely disingenuous for Sinn Féin’s deputy president Michelle O’Neill to speak out about what is happening when it is clear that if the Sinn Féin MPs elected to Westminster took their seats in Parliament, they could have defeated the vote.”

“I sincerely hope that the Irish government has held discussions with Prime Minister May this evening to seek clarification on this latest unwelcome development.

“It is imperative that the two governments liaise with each other to ensure the best possible outcome for Ireland, the UK and the EU”.

-Ends-

Johanna Walsh, Office of Declan Breathnach T.D., Leinster House, Dublin 2 (Declan – 087 2697638)

(T) 01 6183549 (Email) declan.breathnach@oireachtas.ie