Sinn Féin calls for Irish reunification referendum

24 May 17

Sinn Féin have called for an Irish unity referendum to be held within the next five years.

The Irish republican party made the call for unification on Monday as it launched its Westminster general election manifesto.

Michelle O'Neill, Sinn Féin leader in Northern Ireland, said Brexit made ending the division between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland a more pressing matter.

 “This is very much an opportunity to tell both the Tories and the DUP again, in the strongest possible terms that we reject Brexit, we reject any border, we reject any attempt to put limits on our freedom of movement, we reject barriers to trade and agriculture and we absolutely reject Tory cuts,” she said speaking at the manifesto launch.

O’Neill stated that “the good Friday agreement was not compatible with Brexit”.

In January the power-sharing arrangement between nationalists and unionists collapsed in Northern Ireland, ending more than a decade of joint-rule between the two sides.

Sinn Féin’s Martin McGuinness resigned as deputy first minister and the party refused to nominate a replacement bringing the Northern Ireland Assembly to a halt.

An election was called for March by secretary of state for Northern Ireland, James Brokenshire in the hope a new government could be returned but talks following the election broke down.

Now there is no functioning government in Stormont, but budget setting powers are being executed by the civil service until the impasse is surmounted.

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