‘No return to the borders of the past’

RUC and army checking cars at the border in the 1980s. (Pacemaker)
RUC and army checking cars at the border in the 1980s. (Pacemaker)

The British Government has told the ‘Journal’ there will be no return to the “borders of the past” as they prepare to cancel membership of the European Union.

The government’s Department for Exiting the European Union also claimed they would be working with the Northern Ireland Assembly as well as the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly “to ensure Brexit works for thew whole of the UK.”

The Department was responding to concerns raised by deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness in light of comments made by British Prime Minister Theresa May over the weekend.

Ms May had confirmed that Article 50 - the mechanism by which a country signals its intent to leave the European Union - will be triggered before March 2017, with the full Brexit expected two years later.

The Department for Exiting the European Union was formed by Ms May several months ago following the UK-wide Referendum in June.

A spokesperson told the ‘Journal’ this week: “As the Prime Minister said, we will trigger Article 50 no later than the end of March next year.

“She also made clear that while negotiations will be the responsibility of the UK Government, we will consult and work with the devolved administrations in order to ensure Brexit works for the whole UK.”

He added: “The government is clear that there will be no return to the borders of the past.”

Mr. McGuinness, meanwhile, said earlier this week that the British Government has “no plan and no idea” what Brexit means and likened the triggering Article 50 to “taking a leap into the dark.”