Belfast Telegraph

Keeping open Irish border crucial: peer

By Nick Lester

Stability in Northern Ireland and closer UK-Irish relations must not become "collateral damage" of Brexit, a former top diplomat has warned.

Independent crossbench peer Lord Jay of Ewelme also backed calls against the Government using the issue of the border between the Republic and Ulster "as a pawn" in divorce talks with Brussels.

Lord Jay, who served as British ambassador in Paris and is a former head of the diplomatic service, told peers the potential implications of Brexit for Ireland, both north and south, were "far too serious for game-playing".

During a Lords debate on UK-Irish relations, Lord Jay also said: "Maintaining an open Irish land border is essential.

"Any reimposition of border controls or restriction on the movement of goods would be fraught with danger, but moving the border to the Irish Sea is not a price worth paying."

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