Appearing on this morning’s Today programme, hard Brexit-supporting MP Kate Hoey suggested that the Republic of Ireland should have to pay for any border that appears as a result of Brexit.
She said: “We’re not the ones who are going to be putting up the physical border. If it ends up with a no deal we won’t be putting up the border - they’ll [the Republic of Ireland] have to pay for it, because it doesn’t need to happen.”
Commenting, (Lord) Peter Hain, former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and leading supporter of Open Britain, said:
“With her suggestion that Ireland will have to pay for any border, Kate Hoey seems to have been taking diplomacy lessons from Donald Trump.
“It really is astonishing how much damage Brexit is already doing to our country’s reputation. Even our closest friends, Ireland, are now becoming the target of unhinged attacks from hard Brexit cheerleaders.
“The cold, hard reality is very clear: outside of the Customs Union and the Single Market, there will have to be a hard border of some kind on the island of Ireland.
“The only way to prevent a return to the borders of the past is to keep both Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK in the Single Market and the Customs Union on a permanent basis.”
Notes to Editors
The relevant comments from Kate Hoey’s interview on the Today programme this morning can be found here.