Tory dissembling accelerates ahead of Brexit deadline

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There are calls for the Dublin government to provide “push back” against the increasingly perfidious actions of London over the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement and its protocol for the north of Ireland.

Sinn Féin Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill accused the British government of behaving in a “shameful” manner by failing to extend the Brexit transition period beyond the end of the year.

The Tories appear to be hoping to exploit the coronavirus pandemic as cover for resiling on their commitments and to push once again for a chaotic crash Brexit.

Sinn Féin MEP Chris MacManus warned that the current Fine Gael caretaker government were failing to grasp the gravity of current Brexit developments.

“Fine Gael are doing the bare minimum right now. It’s just not good enough. We are drifting into a Brexit catastrophe. Every decision now or any lack of decisiveness has grave implications for people all over the island of Ireland.”

Mr MacManus again highlighted the necessity that every detail of previously signed agreements are upheld.

“We must see an unconditional implementation of the withdrawal agreement and the Irish protocol. We are now rapidly heading towards a no deal situation and not withstanding Covid matters Fine Gael appear wholly unprepared for the various potential outcomes.”

Among recent Tory comments are one by Brexit Minister Michael Gove (pictured) that agreed new border controls between the islands of Ireland and Britain should not be implemented because they will be disliked by unionists.

He said that a “significant new presence” by the EU would “make the protocol less acceptable to the majority community (sic) in Northern Ireland and therefore you run the risk of the protocol being voted down in a future election”.

It was unclear how an election could “vote down” the protocol, which will see British authorities apply EU customs rules to goods entering the north. It is designed to ensure that no hard border can be erected across the island of Ireland, with checks taking place instead at seaports and airports.

But a top council official in the North has said they were told there will be no new port infrastructure built, and no customs checks post Brexit.

It had previously been reported that essential new infrastructure was being put in place at Larne seaport, but Mid and East Antrim Borough Council Chief Executive Anne Donaghy denied this. She said she had been assured on the issue by the British Direct Ruler himself, Brandon Lewis.

Sinn Féin blasted the “naivety” of the Dublin government.

“They are putting far too much confidence in the notion that the British government are negotiating in good faith and adhering to the stringencies in these agreements,” said Mr MacManus.

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