Protocol was "too strict" and mistakes were made with Brexit, confesses Irish Prime Minister

Protocol was “too strict” and mistakes were made with Brexit, confesses Irish Prime Minister

Leo Varadkar, the leader of Ireland, said that all parties involved made errors in how they handled Brexit, but he promised to be “flexible and reasonable” while working to resolve problems with the Northern Ireland Protocol.

The post-Brexit procedure, he acknowledged, is “too strict,” but he also said he understood unionists’ complaints that the agreement had made them feel less British.

In certain unionist and loyalist circles, Mr Varadkar, who was elected Taoiseach for a second time in December, has fallen out of favour due to claims that he played a key role in the development of the disputed protocol.

Despite this, he has claimed he is eager to visit the area in the early part of this year.

Mr Varadkar stated: “Brexit was imposed on Northern Ireland without cross-community consent, without the support of the majority of people in Northern Ireland, and one of the good things about the European Union was that it diminished barriers and diminished borders between north and south and that was a great reassurance to people who come from a nationalist background in particular.

“So I understand that there are two sides to this story.

“A lot of people who are unionists feel that the protocol has separated them from Great Britain.

“A lot of people from a nationalist background in Northern Ireland feel that it separated them from the rest of Ireland. “

Brexit, according to Mr Varadkar, is a reality that cannot be changed.

Due to the DUP’s boycott of the Stormont institutions in opposition to the protocol, powersharing in Northern Ireland is now in turmoil.

It is unclear if any agreement reached by London and Brussels would be sufficient to persuade the DUP to remove its objection to powersharing.

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