In the Dáil, during Leaders’ Questions.
Following on from MPs in London voting down the UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal 432 to 202…
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said:
“This is a problem that began in Westminster, with the referendum on Brexit. We found a solution – the Withdrawal Agreement negotiated over months and months, agreed by 28 governments.
“And now Westminster has rejected that solution. So the problem lies in Westminster. And I welcome the fact the Prime Minister has said that she’s now going to engage with senior politicians from all parties to see if they can come together with a way forward, with a Brexit that commands a majority in the House of Commons.
“But whatever they come up with must be acceptable to us in Ireland the European Union as a whole.”
Watch Dáil proceedings live here
A Leave campaigner outside the UK’s House of Commons yesterday
“It is up to the British authorities today or tomorrow to assess the outcome of this vote and up to the British government to indicate how we are going to take things forward on March 29 to an orderly withdrawal…”
“Now, with this standstill, until we have found a way forward which will see a full majority we won’t be able to move forward, so this is why the future steps must be indicated very clearly … by the British government.”
Michel Barnier EU’s chief Brexit negotiator
Brexit at a ‘standstill’ after May’s Commons defeat, says Barnier (The Guardian)
DUP leader Arlene Foster speaking in Westminster ahead of the vote on UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement in the House of Commons this evening.
LIVE: Decision day at Westminster (RTE)
More as we get it.
Brexit vote LIVE (The Guardian)
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas at the Global Ireland conference in Dublin Castle yesterday
“ I will leave it to the bookmakers and fortune-tellers to predict the results of discussions in London. However, there are three takeaways from the Brexit process and the current state of world affairs that I would like to share with you today.
The first is: We are strong when we stand together. During the Brexit negotiations, all 27 Member States agreed on a common position – and stood by it.
This unity includes full solidarity with Ireland. We insisted, and still do, that a hard border dividing the Irish island is unacceptable. And yes, some people called us stubborn.
But the truth is: Avoiding a hard border in Ireland is a fundamental concern. It is a matter of principle, a question of identity for the European Union. A union that, more than anything else, serves one purpose: To build and maintain peace in Europe.
As Germans, we understand how walls and borders can threaten peace. We believe in the peace-making power of European unity.
A belief we share with you, the Irish. Your Good Friday Agreement is living proof of this principle”
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas in Dublin Castle yesterday.
Address by Foreign Minister Heiko Maas on the occasion of the Meeting of Ireland’s Ambassadors and Consuls General (German Foreign Ministry)
Thanks Otis Blue
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar launching the ‘Brexit Ready’ plan at Government Buildings this morning
Published last night.
The Government’s contingency action plan for a no-deal Brexit.
Read full report here
No iodine tablets?
What’s included in the Government’s no-deal Brexit plan (RTÉ)
Brian Sammon writes:
UK demand that EU swap Ireland for Northern Ireland and assume responsibility for DUP…
How A Second Brexit Referendum Will Work (Telegraph [behind paywall])
By Con Kennedy.
Ollie’s Xmas sorted.
Jon Henley, in The Guardian, reports:
The European commission has confirmed that British citizens will have to pay to visit mainland Europe as soon as the EU’s free movement laws no longer apply.
A spokeswoman for Jean-Claude Juncker, the commission’s president, said visitors from post-Brexit Britain would have to fill out an online form and pay €7 (£6) for a visa waiver, which would be valid for three years.
Britons must pay €7 to visit mainland Europe after Brexit (The Guardian)
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar told reporters:
“We don’t believe it’s up for renegotiation, we’re very keen to begin, as soon as it’s ratified, talks on the future relationship, because we want to have a close relationship with the United Kingdom.
“As Europe we reaffirmed our commitment to the need for a backstop, and not just because it protects Ireland and ensures no hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland, thus protecting the peace process and the Good Friday Agreement, but also because it’s a European issue too, and an open border between Northern Ireland and Ireland can’t become a back door into the single market.”
More as they get it.
Taoiseach ‘very satisfied’ with EU position on backstop (RTE)