Brexit: Arlene Foster signals DUP shift

Inside Politics: Leader tells Dublin event that party could accept post-Brexit arrangements specific to North with conditions

DUP leader Arlene Foster arrives to speak to the Dublin Chamber of Commerce. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

DUP leader Arlene Foster arrives to speak to the Dublin Chamber of Commerce. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Good morning. DUP leader Arlene Foster came to Dublin yesterday evening to attend a dinner given by the Dublin Chamber of Commerce, and she came with something to say: the DUP could accept post-Brexit arrangements that are specific to Northern Ireland, as long as they 1) are approved by the North’s politicians and 2) don’t affect the constitutional position.

This is a significant shift from the DUP, and the immediate hope in Dublin and London was it could enable some form of Northern Ireland-only backstop. But hold the weddin’: Mrs Foster also stressed the backstop as currently envisaged for the North would have to go and that Northern membership of the single market and the customs union, which could entail a customs border between the North and Britain, is a non-runner.

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