Real choice on Brexit is between Special Status or a major mess, says Farry

Alliance Brexit spokesperson Stephen Farry has said the choice is not between a one-size-fits-all Brexit and Special Status, but Special Status and major anomalies emerging.

The Alliance Deputy Leader was speaking after Secretary of State James Brokenshire said Special Status for Northern Ireland was “the wrong approach” ahead of a vote on triggering Article 50, in which a majority of MPs backed the Government’s EU Bill.

“The Secretary of State has been very dismissive of the concept of Special Status, but he has not entirely ruled it out,” said Dr Farry.

“Alliance is clear Brexit will be bad for the UK as whole, but particularly damaging to Northern Ireland. Beyond the disproportionate damage to our economy, society and the Good Friday Agreement, there are too many features of Northern Ireland particular to it, including the land border with the continuing EU, an integrated all-island economy and the right of people here to access an Irish passport and therefore European citizenship.

“A one-size-fits-all Brexit simply doesn’t work. Northern Ireland is already a special case, and this has been informally recognised by many voices across the EU. In reality the choice is not between full Brexit and Special Status, but between Special Status or the emergence of major anomalies that if left unaddressed, would amount to an almighty mess.”

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