Irish border threatens entire Brexit deal, says Michel Barnier

'My door is open' – Michel Barnier

'My door is open' – Michel Barnier

Michel Barnier is visiting the border between Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom, and the Republic of Ireland.

"There is absolutely no question of Ireland or the European Union being interested in a land grab from Northern Ireland".

The government said it was disappointed.

He said: "The normal protocol for a visiting prime minister is to seek permission to visit a part of the UK".

The Irish Government's position is resigned to focusing on getting the British government to come up with a satisfactory interpretation of the backstop - or Option C.

The government was defeated for the seventh time in the House of Lords today, as it voted on the EU Withdrawal Bill. Foster said in comments reported in the Irish media.

The DUP accused Mr Varadkar of failing to follow protocol by not informing local elected representatives of his visit to counties Armagh and Down.

Speaking briefly to the press outside before engaging in a private meeting he said "I am very happy to be in Newry, coming back to Northern Ireland in the context of this very very hard complex and extraordinary negotiations of Brexit". "Their preferred approach is to use Brexit in whatever way possible to undermine Northern Ireland and particularly its constitutional position".

Senate confirms Mike Pompeo as 70th secretary of state
The CIA said she took over on Thursday as acting director while the Senate weighs whether to make it permanent. John McCain who is still in Arizona battling brain cancer and was not present for the vote.

He said the Irish border issue is one of the three key priorities of the Brexit talks from the very beginning and it is an European Union issue, not only just an Irish issue.

"I just want to be a good neighbour and I received a very warm welcome in Northern Ireland", he said. "So the protocol is to contact the Northern Ireland Office".

He hailed the progress and benefits that have resulted from the signing of the Good Friday Agreement 20 years ago.

The EU's chief negotiator was given a cold welcome in Northern Ireland where Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster said he was not an "honest broker" and did not understand Ulster's "wider unionist culture".

Barnier has maintained that a "backstop" option for the Irish border must remain in place.

"We want to see all parts of the Agreement operating and I also want to see the great strides that we have made on North/South cooperation continue and grow in the years ahead". But how? Ireland says it would not accept customs checks or infrastructure at the border, and Mrs May promises there will be none.

Normally the visit of a foreign prime minister to the United Kingdom would follow established official protocols.

Mr Varadkar said he was resolutely committed to protecting the peace process across Ireland.

Recommended News

  • Sainsbury's shares up 15% as it strikes deal to acquire Asda

    Sainsbury's shares up 15% as it strikes deal to acquire Asda

    The last big deal by Sainsbury's, which has a market value of £5.9 billion, was its £1.4 billion purchase of Argos in 2016. News of the tie-up sent Sainsbury's share price surging 14.5 percent to 309 pence by the close of trading in London.
    Slain deputies handcuffs used in arrest in Maine

    Slain deputies handcuffs used in arrest in Maine

    He was a member of the police force for 13 years and will be laid to rest on Monday at Cross Insurance Center in Bangor, Maine. Before the arrest, the wife of the slain deputy had implored his killer to turn himself in, or at least reach out to police.
    At Least 9 Teenagers Die in Israel Flash Floods

    At Least 9 Teenagers Die in Israel Flash Floods

    The usually dry areas of North Africa and the Middle East have been hit by intermittent heavy rainfall in recent days. The hike the students were on was meant to be a " bonding trip " for them, according to officials.
  • John Kelly Denies Calling Trump an

    John Kelly Denies Calling Trump an "Idiot", Is Still Doomed

    Kelly is Trump's second chief of staff, having been appointed to the position this past July to replace Reince Priebus. She stood by the report and said the relationship between the President and his chief of staff has deteriorated.
    Central American 'migrant caravan' reaches US-Mexico border

    Central American 'migrant caravan' reaches US-Mexico border

    Most Central American migrants seeking asylum in the USA cite the threat of gang violence in their homelands. Q:Is this caravan something new? At its peak, more than 1,000 people were walking north through Mexico.
    Donald Trump to 'meet the Queen' during United Kingdom  visit

    Donald Trump to 'meet the Queen' during United Kingdom visit

    The White House announced Thursday that the Trump U.K. visit is scheduled for July 13th, aka Friday the 13th. Meanwhile, the offer of a ceremonial state visit remains on the table, according to a Whitehall source.
  • Listen to Kanye West's new song

    Listen to Kanye West's new song "Ye vs"

    That's what makes us individuals. "I really feel that Kanye is a controversial celebrity", said Angel Elmore of Hyde Park Records. Mr Trump replied to West on Twitter .
    Ronald Acuna, Ozzie Albies go deep as youthful Braves beat Reds

    Ronald Acuna, Ozzie Albies go deep as youthful Braves beat Reds

    On Tuesday, the Reds' bullpen blew a four-run lead in the ninth inning, although Cincinnati came back to win 9-7 in 12 innings. Sam Freeman (1-1) retired all four batters he faced and Arodys Vizcaino pitched a one-hit ninth for his second save.

    Ford is ditching these auto models

    Ford made $119 million from its European business, and lost money in South America, Middle East and Africa and Asia Pacific. Shanks said North American operations had been hurt by rising costs for key commodities such as steel and aluminum.
  • Dallas Cowboys take Stanford TE Dalton Schultz with 137th overall pick

    Dallas Cowboys take Stanford TE Dalton Schultz with 137th overall pick

    The Cowboys signed Joe Thomas to help offset the free-agent loss of Kyle Wilber, and they're confident in Jaylon Smith's progress. According to Nexstar'sTobin McDuff, who is reporting from the draft, the fans were happy to welcome Leighton Vander Esch to town.
    Amazon's Q1 sales jump 43% to $51bn

    Amazon's Q1 sales jump 43% to $51bn

    BidaskClub downgraded shares of Amazon .com from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating in a research report on Friday, March 30th. Morgan said, "We do not expect the company to get much push-back from consumers given the increasing value of the service".
    Senate Judiciary Committee approves bill to protect special counsel; is it constitutional?

    Senate Judiciary Committee approves bill to protect special counsel; is it constitutional?

    Posner had called for legislative protection for the special counsel in a February 4 op-ed for the New York Times . Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Christopher Coons (D-Del.) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) cosponsored the bill.

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.