Taoiseach holds 'good' meeting with Jeremy Corbyn on the North and Brexit

Taoiseach holds 'good' meeting with Jeremy Corbyn on the North and Brexit
Leader of the Labour Party in the United Kingdom Jeremy Corbyn leaving Government Buildings in Dublin. Picture: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar held a "good" meeting with UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn in Dublin this afternoon.

Mr Corbyn was in Áras an Uachtaráin to meet President Michael D Higgins before heading to Government buildings.

In a statement from Taoiseach's office, it was revealed that Mr Varadkar and Mr Corbyn had a "good" meeting with "detailed discussions for an hour and a half on Northern Ireland, Brexit, and the current political situation in Westminster".

The statement read: "Discussions focused principally on the need to restore power-sharing in Northern Ireland and the importance of ongoing engagement with all political parties in the North.

"These talks continue this week in Belfast involving the Tánaiste and the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

"They also considered Brexit, with both sides sharing serious concerns about a no deal scenario and its inherent dangers, including the possibility that the UK may end up in a no deal situation by default unless alternatives are pursued.

"The Taoiseach and Mr Corbyn also discussed the importance of avoiding any return of a hard border on the island of Ireland.

"They pledged to stay in touch with regard to both Northern Ireland and Brexit."

In the Dáil today, Fianna Fáil deputy leader Dara Calleary brought up the current political situation in the North during leaders’ questions.

Mr Calleary pressed the Government to state whether it still believed devolution could be restored by the start of July, or whether the talks process in Belfast was going to be allowed to drift once again.

This morning, Sinn Féin president Mary Lou McDonald acknowledged the “dismay” felt by many as she was pressed on whether the deadlock in Northern Ireland had been a contributory factor to her party’s poor showing in elections south of the border

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