No Northern Ireland party will have veto on Brexit deal – UK minister


FILE PHOTO: Northern Ireland Secretary Julian Smith is seen outside Downing Street in London, Britain, October 8, 2019. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

DUBLIN (Reuters) – No single party in Northern Ireland will be given a veto in any Brexit deal that is now “a distinct possibility” following a positive meeting between the Irish and British leaders on Thursday, Britain’s Northern Ireland minister said.

The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which supports Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s minority government, would have had an effective veto on post-Brexit customs checks on the Irish border under proposals tabled by Johnson last week.

“What I’m committing to is that we are not going to have one party having a veto over any element of this situation,” the Northern Ireland minister, Julian Smith, told BBC Northern Ireland. He refused to give any further details, saying they were for Britain and the EU to negotiate.

“What I’m really positive about is that both governments (Ireland and Britain) seem to be on track to coming towards an accommodation. … The Prime Minister has always been committed to a deal and what we saw today of both sides was taking the time to ensure that a deal is now a distinct possibility.”

Reporting by Padraic Halpin; Editing by Leslie Adler

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