Newton Emerson: Careless politics over EU Belfast office is inexcusable

Row over facility to help police sea border splits along green and orange lines

Brussels must share some of the blame for letting the dispute arise and get out of hand. Photograph:  John Thys/AFP via Getty Images

Brussels must share some of the blame for letting the dispute arise and get out of hand. Photograph: John Thys/AFP via Getty Images

The US consulate in Belfast was established in 1796 by president George Washington and is the second-oldest US diplomatic mission in the world, after the US embassy in London. This reflected Ulster’s strong links to the American revolution, primarily from the Presbyterian community.

Even today, the Belfast consulate has an unusual status, providing services normally reserved for an embassy.

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