DUP MP Gregory Campbell has queried whether the European Union institutions sufficiently understand how difficult it would be to maintain a ‘hard border’ here even if there was the political will to establish one.
In fact, Mr. Campbell believes it would be impossible to police given how porous the 300 mile-plus frontier is.
The East Derry MP raised the matter at Westminster with the British Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union Robin Walker.
Mr. Campbell remarked: “Our government, the Dublin government and Brussels have all said that they do not want a hard border.”
But he questioned whether the EU realised the imposition of a hard border would be a practical as well as a political impossibility.
“Does the Minister have an understanding from the EU that a hard border, whoever might want it, would be totally impossible to police because of the hundreds of crossing points that everyone in Northern Ireland would use, even if someone tried to implement a hard border on the ground?” he asked.
Referring to the former Derry City councillor’s “considerable experience and knowledge of the issue”, Mr. Walker stated: “He is absolutely right.
“That is why, from what I have seen and conversations I have had, London, Dublin, Belfast and Brussels have all been clear about the need to avoid the creation of a hard border.”