Kenny says NI Executive and Assembly need Brexit consensus
All 15 secretaries general in London last week for talks with British counterparts
Gerry Adams: “the Government should be proactive about setting out contingencies to protect and promote the national interests of the entire island of Ireland”
A division of opinion in the Northern Ireland Executive is “not going to help anyone’s case” in dealing with Britain’s exit from the EU, according to the Taoiseach.
Enda Kenny told Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams that if there was a division of opinion about what the North wanted in dealing with Brexit “I cannot sort it out unless there is consensus and agreement” on what the Executive wants.
He said every secretary general of every government department had been in London last week talking to the permanent secretaries of the departments of the British government “going through each and every detail as we understand them at the moment”.
Mr Adams said that rather than waiting to see what the British authorities would do, “the Government should be proactive about setting out contingencies to protect and promote the national interests of the entire island of Ireland”.
He welcomed Mr Kenny’s agreement to have an all-island civil dialogue, which holds its first session on November 2nd.
However, Mr Adams said the principal objective of the dialogue “must be to secure the position of the island of Ireland within the EU, in line with the democratically expressed wishes of the people of the North”.
Mr Kenny said he needed to know what the Executive wanted. When the North-South Ministerial Council meets on November 18th “it is very important that despite political differences we at least have a common view as to where the parties in the Executive and Assembly want Northern Ireland to go, so that we can help them and work with them”.