Could the cross of St Patrick be a flag of unity for Northern Ireland?
Could the cross of Saint Patrick be used as a unity flag for Northern Ireland?
Conservative MP for Crawley Henry Smith asked the government what consideration has been given to the flag as a symbol of unity for Northern Ireland.
During Northern Ireland questions in the House of Commons, he asked: "What consideration has been given to adopting the cross of St Patrick as a unity flag for all communities representing Northern Ireland?"
The new Northern Ireland Office junior minister Kris Hopkins said any changes in existing arrangements would require "cross-community support".
He said: "The issue of flags in Northern Ireland is a sensitive and complex one.
"Any change in existing arrangements would require cross-community support.
"The Stormont House Agreement included a commitment to a commission on flags, identity, culture and tradition, and this was established in June."