‘Ireland must get concessions on Brexit or consider its position within the EU’

Ireland must get concessions on Brexit or consider its position within the EU, Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice has said.

His comments come following an opinion piece in The Irish Times today, December 9, where the European Commissioner for Agriculture, Phil Hogan, said that now is the time to cut Ireland’s ties with Brexiting Britain.

Fitzmaurice said that the comments of Commissioner Hogan that the UK is in disarray with regard to Brexit and that Ireland will have to negotiate the future through the EU platform is another indication that Ireland is going to be expected to bend the knee to the EU once again.

“Ireland’s special relationship with the UK has to be taken into account in any negotiations after the Brexit vote and if that relationship is not respected then Ireland should consider their own position within the EU.”

The EU has been less than co-operative with Ireland in recent times and tillage farmers in this country who were in trouble within the past 12 months received no help at all from the EU for instance.

“What a lot of people do not realise that Ireland are now a net contributor to the EU and now they find themselves piggy in the middle between the EU and the UK over Brexit.

“Ireland’s special relationship with our biggest trading partner, the UK must be respected by the EU in any discussions going forward and if that is not done then Ireland must consider it’s own position within the EU.”

In the opinion piece today, Commissioner Hogan said that “Brexit will happen and we now need to take a very strategic and far-sighted review of our relationships with both the UK and the rest of our European partners”.

“There will be a new dynamic in European affairs, and Ireland needs to be absolutely prepared to influence, shape and lead that dynamic and change.

“If we don’t step up to the plate in managing this fundamental shift in our relationship with our European neighbours, then others will shape the environment for us.”