Leo Varadkar: British election result gives 'opportunity' for a softer Brexit

By Elaine Loughlin, Political Reporter

The outcome of the British election has given "an opportunity" for a softer Brexit which would benefit Ireland Leo Varadkar believes.

But the incoming Taoiseach has warned that Theresa May's Government cannot get "too close" to any party in Northern Ireland if it is to stand by the Good Friday Agreement.

It comes as Taoiseach Enda Kenny said he is "concerned" by the deal Mrs May has proposed with the DUP.

Speaking this morning, Mr Varadkar said he had heard Mr Kenny's comments and added that it is "absolutely very important" that both the Irish and British governments "understand that their role is to be co-guarantors" in the good Friday Agreement.

"When I have an opportunity to speak to prime minister May I will emphasise that as well because our role as Governments here in Dublin and London is to act as co-guarantors and not to be too close to any particular party in the North, whether it's a nationalist or republican party or whether it's a unionist party. That's certainly something that I would emphasise in any contacts that I have with prime minister May."

While Mr Varadkar said political outcomes have been very difficult to predict in recent times, he said he has "a sense" that there is now an opportunity for a soft Brexit.

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