Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has said a border poll is “not right at this time” as speculation mounts that Ireland could be reunited once again.
Speaking to the BBC, An Tánaiste said that, while he supported a 32 county republic, it would be better to wait before holding a referendum:
“I believe the aspiration to a united Ireland is a legitimate one,” he said.
“It’s something supported by my party, something I believe in, something that our constitution aspires to as well, but I don’t think it’s appropriate or right at this time.”
Mr Varadkar view’s echo those of Taoiseach Micheál Martin, who said that the push for a referendum in the wake of Brexit was a mistake:
“I think it is divisive and puts people back into trenches too early,” Mr Martin said last year.
“My view is that I want to develop a shared dialogue, irrespective of one’s constitutional preferences.”
The intervention comes as the Northern Ireland Protocol Bill continues its journey through the British Parliament; London has decided to take unilateral action to amend the rules that govern the province’s post-Brexit trading arrangements - something firmly opposed by Dublin and Brussels.
Writing today in the Observer, Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney and his German counterpart, Annalena Baerbock, said that, “There is no legal or political justification for unilaterally breaking an international agreement entered into only two years ago.
"The tabling of legislation will not fix the challenges around the protocol. Instead, it will create a new set of uncertainties and make it more challenging to find durable solutions.”
The British Government’s bill will halt customs checks on goods destined for Northern Ireland from Great Britain and give British ministers the power to introduce tax and spending policies in the province without the permission of Brussels.
It is also hoped the legislation will satisfy the DUP and means the party nominates Sir Jeffrey Donaldson as Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland.
Main image: The Tánaiste Leo Varadkar speaking outside Dublin Castle. Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews