Suspension of British parliament draws criticism from Ireland

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, August 29, 2019
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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson (front) makes his first statement in the House of Commons in London, Britain, on July 25, 2019. [Photo/Xinhua]

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's decision to suspend the British parliament has drawn criticism from Ireland, reported local media on Wednesday.

Simon Coveney, Irish Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, told Irish media while paying a visit in Paris that it is "hard to tell" if a no-deal Brexit is now more likely following Wednesday's announcement of the suspension of the British parliament, which is widely believed to be an attempt by Boris Johnson to reduce the chances of the British parliamentarians to pass laws to block a no-deal Brexit.

Coveney said that a lot of time had been spent negotiating the Withdrawal Agreement setting out Britain's terms for exiting the European Union (EU) which would prevent the re-emergence of a hard border between Ireland and Britain's Northern Ireland, which he said was a source of tensions on the island of Ireland in the past.

"Now we have a British government that seems to be simply wiping the slate clean on the Irish issue in terms of the commitments that they have made. We can never sign an agreement with that approach," he said.

"Ireland is reasonable and has always shown flexibility and a willingness to compromise. We are not going to compromise on a peace process that is fragile right now on the island of Ireland," he added.

Reacting to the latest developments in London over Brexit, Irish Minister for Fiance Paschal Donohoe told local media RTE "the events (referring to the suspension of the British parliament) of today inject even more uncertainty to what could happen in the run-up to October 31st."

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has vowed to leave the EU with or without a deal by the end of this October.

Mary Lou McDonald, leader of Sinn Fein, one of the major opposition parties in Ireland, said that Boris Johnson's move to suspend the British parliament "shows the arrogance of the British government."

"The fact is that Brexit is incompatible with the Good Friday Agreement and the Tories have shown a total and callous disregard for our country and the democratically expressed wishes of the people of the north (referring to Northern Ireland) to remain in the EU. The need to protect Irish interests is paramount," she said during an interview with local media.

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