Could Ireland and Britain share border control after Brexit?
The UK could move its border to also include the Republic in order to ‘protect the two islands against terrorism’.
That is according to Northern Ireland’s First Minister Arlene Foster, who also added that the prospect was being discussed before Britain’s vote to leave the EU.
Apparently, the talks between officials from Ireland and Britain cannot yet be called negotiations, but the idea has been raised.
Ms Foster was talking about the matter on BBC programme Hardtalk. She said: “They were speaking about this long before the European Union exit vote was taken. How do we protect ourselves as two islands against terrorism?
“How do we protect ourselves in other ways? And the way they were talking about was using the common travel area and having that special relationship recognised by working very closely together.
“Of course this will have to be accepted by the other member states in Europe.
“We can’t enter into negotiations into any of this until Article 50 is triggered and the Republic’s government is very keen to point out that they are not in negotiation at the moment they are in discussion.
“It should be no surprise to anyone that the UK has not yet finalised its plans for leaving the EU, indeed if they had I would be concerned, given that they are in detailed discussions with us to help shape the plan,” insisted Foster.
“They are still at the information-gathering and analysis stage which is a huge task covering many areas of government.
“We are currently feeding our own assessment of the issues into this process through the Joint Ministerial Committee and extensive bi-lateral engagement between officials.”
Ireland and Britain has shared a strong relationship for many years. The shared control of borders would be a complex issue after Brexit, as Ireland will still be part of the EU.
Citizens of both countries are likely to keep a close eye on developments.