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Pelosi’s red line on Brexit

Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaking in Dublin today.


By Anthony Neeson

Nancy Pelosi has warned a London audience that there would be “no chance whatsoever” of a post-Brexit trade deal between the U.S. and the UK if the Good Friday Agreement was weakened in any way.

Pelosi, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, was speaking at the London School of Economics ahead of her planned visit to Dublin where she today met Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Tánaiste Simon Coveney. Brexit will dominate her meetings in Ireland.

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The leading Democrat, said: “First of all it is very hard to pass a trade bill in the Congress of the United States, so it’s no given any way.

“But if there were any weakening of the Good Friday accords, there would be no chance whatsoever, a non-starter for a U.S.-UK trade agreement. The Good Friday accords ended seven hundred years of conflict.

“This is not a treaty only, it’s an ideal, it’s something that’s a model to the world, something that we all take pride in.

“It was a model and other people have used it as a model and we don’t want that model to be something that can be bargained away in another agreement.”

She said that she told British Prime Minister Theresa May and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn during their meetings that there would be no trade deal with the U.S. if the Good Friday Agreement was undermined by Brexit.

“To all of them, we made it clear: don’t even think about that.”

The Speaker’s intervention once more puts Ireland at the center of Brexiteers’ woes.

Eurosceptic Conservative MPs and the DUP already blame Ireland and the EU for insisting on a backstop to ensure an open border in Ireland, citing it as being the main reason why Brexit has yet to be delivered.