Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams has said a united Ireland is not the only option he is willing to consider in terms of the future of the North.
Mr Adams said at the weekend that he is prepared to consider alternative forms of governance for the North than a united Ireland.
In a significant intervention, Mr Adams said Sinn Féin wanted to see a real republic on the island of Ireland. He said his party would consider alternative forms of governance, in the short run.
“We’d prefer a unitary state but can we look at other methods? Yes, absolutely,” he said.
The comments from a man many people have said they feel was a commander in the IRA are significant in the wake of the Brexit result.
The Louth TD was speaking as the party’s Ard Comhairle met in Dublin on Saturday. Mr Adams added: “Can we be open to other suggestions either as interim or transitional measures or as a form of governance for the whole island? Yes, of course we can.”
Mr Adams said he agreed with Taoiseach Enda Kenny on seeking to minimise the impact of Brexit on the people of the North as well as seeking to protect the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.
Mr Kenny drew the ire of DUP leader, Arlene Foster, who rejected his idea of an All-Ireland forum and having a border poll. Mr Adams said Ms Foster’s stance was “entirely predictable”.
“A lot of Unionists are concerned about very negative consequences of being dragged out of the EU — people in business, people in agriculture,” he said.
“It isn’t a matter of dragging them into a united Ireland but it is a matter of thinking about new relationships and they are thinking about new relationships.”
“What is required is a consistent, strategic position that doesn’t have to be in your face,” he added.
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