David Ford said: “I have serious doubts as to whether the Goldsmith report represents a realistic way forward for the UK as a whole. Ideas such as 16-year-olds swearing allegiance hark back to an imperial past, rather than looking towards a progressive future.
“However, I have particular concerns about proposals to abolish the rights of Irish citizens in the UK. Even though Lord Goldsmith recognises that the Good Friday Agreement confirms the right of people to take either British or Irish citizenship, he seems to think that you can distinguish between Irish citizens from Northern Ireland and Irish citizens from the Republic of Ireland
“It seems to me that such a suggestion is completely impractical. It would not be recognised by the Republic of Ireland, and it illustrates the deeply flawed nature of these proposals.”