04.12.2017 | Furious DUP ‘sinks’ Brexit deal: Arlene Foster DESTROYS May's negotiation with phone call
Source - The Daily Express
Dublin confirmed this evening "effectively a deal was done" between the UK and Ireland before the DUP ferociously attacked the proposals.
Leaks from Dublin this morning indicated after Brexit Mrs May was prepared to “align” Northern Ireland's economy with the Republic a, rather than the rest of the UK.
But a furious statement from DUP leader Ms Foster, followed by a phone call with the Prime Minister, put a halt to any deal being agreed today.
Irish taoiseach (prime minister) Leo Varadkar confirmed this evening Mrs May had earlier approached him with a deal earlier today, which he approved.
He said he then contacted Donald Tusk and Jean-Claude Juncker, confirming he supported the proposed paper.
However Mrs May later contacted him later in the day to withdraw the offer.
Mr Vardkar said in Dublin this evening: “I’m surprised and disappointed that the British Government now appears not to be in a position to conclude what was agreed earlier today.”
He said things went sour between Mrs May and Mr Juncker during their working lunch after Ms Foster's phone call.
Mr Varadkar said: "It is evident that things broke down and became problematic during the lunch in Brussels."
Ireland's tánaiste (deputy leader) Simon Coveney said "effectively a deal was done" before the DUP's intervention.
Mr Varadkar said, while the DUP's opinion was valued, there were other parties in Northern Ireland who also deserved a say.
And he highlighted the fact the majority of Northern Irish people voted Remain and an even higher percentage voted in favour of the Good Friday Agreement (GFA).
All major parties, both nationalist and unionist, in Northern Ireland campaigned in favour of the GFA - with the sole exception of the DUP.
The agreement brought about the end to the Troubles, which left 3,500 dead and tens of thousands injured.
BBC journalist Laura Kuenssberg said Arlene Foster’s furious response to a proposed solution to the Ireland border issue scuppered the deal.
Ms Kuenssberg tweeted: "Hearing it was the DUP call that sunk today's chances of a deal.
"Foster held her press conference, 20 minutes later May leaves talks with Juncker to call her, goes back into the room and the deal is off."
And Sky journalist Beth Rigby quoted a UK government source as saying: “They were on board but the language was too strong for them”.
Ms Kuenssberg later said she had been told it was not purely the DUP that ended talks today.
She said: “Downing Street sources insist it wasn't just the DUP intervention that meant no deal today - citizens' rights and ECJ still not finalised.
“If that's true it's less embarrassing but doesn't exactly bode well.”