Arlene Foster

Brexit news: NO HARD BORDER – Irish nationalists and unionists unite to reject checkpoints

Arlene FosterGETTY

Arlene Foster says Unionists ‘want to live in harmony with Nationalist neighbours’

A team of researchers from King’s College’s ‘UK in a Changing Europe’ unit suggested there was widespread support within both communities for a type of UK exit which would largely eliminate the need for any border.

Participants in the survey were polled on a wide variety of subjects, with 55 percent of Catholic saying the idea of customs checks was more than they could bear.

In addition 20 per cent found the idea of cameras at the border unacceptable, with 9 percent supporting the idea of them being vandalised.

And almost three-quarters – 72 percent – were vehemently opposed to the idea of British soldiers manning checkpoints.

Irish borderGETTY

Both communities are opposed to a hard border

Unionists want to live in harmony with their nationalist neighbours

DUP leader Arlene Foster

Writing in The Times, Mrs Foster stressed: “Unionists want to live in harmony with their nationalist neighbours.

“They want to grow our economy and share prosperity.

“They want the next generation to live in better times.

Mrs Foster, who is due to give a speech at a conference organised by the Policy Exchange think tank on the subject of the Union in Westminster today, added: “Northern Ireland is approaching its 100th birthday, an anniversary many thought it would never see.

“The bulk of our first century has seen us either in actual conflict or arguing over our constitutional status.

“The next 100 years need not be the same.”

John Garry, Principal Investigator on The UK in a Changing Europe project and Professor of Political Behaviour at Queen’s University Belfast, said: “We find Catholics and Protestants most prefer the option that would avoid the need for any new barriers on borders.

“Either in the Irish Sea or across Ireland. They want the UK as a whole to stay in the customs union and single market.”


The report said: “There is substantial and intense opposition to possible North-South border checks between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland and to east-west border checks between Northern Ireland and Great Britain.”

The polling also suggested that 22 per cent of Catholics, and 36 per cent of Catholics who vote Sinn Fein, would support protesters blocking traffic in the event that a hard border was introduced.

Fears were expressed about border checks resulting in a return to the days of the Troubles.

One Catholic Remain voter saying “Protests would start peaceful and then if they don’t get anywhere they would just escalate it”, and one Protestant Leave voter warning: “I think the ceasefire would go.”

Meanwhile, a separate Policy Exchange poll indicated that 60 per cent of voters in Northern Ireland believed Brexit made a break-up of the Union more likely, higher even than Scotland on 59 per cent.

Posted on; Express.co.uk>>

Check Also

stephen pound eu referendum brexit corbyn

Labour’s Brexit TURMOIL: Corbyn dealt HUGE blow as frontbencher backs second EU referendum



ONE of Jeremy Corbyn’s senior frontbencher MPs has backed calls for a second EU referendum, placing Labour in fresh Brexit turmoil.