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Politicians disappointed after losing legal challenge over Brexit

Published 28/10/2016

Sinn Fein's John O'Dowd at Belfast's High Court for the judgment
Sinn Fein's John O'Dowd at Belfast's High Court for the judgment

Peace process safeguards may be jeopardised if the Brexit process fails to allow proper parliamentary scrutiny before talks are triggered, campaigners have insisted.

A cross-community group of politicians said they were disappointed after losing their legal challenge to the Prime Minister's plan.

Solicitor Fiona Cassidy said: "We remain deeply concerned that there are a range of human rights and peace process safeguards that may be placed in serious jeopardy by any Brexit process that fails to provide for proper parliamentary scrutiny of those safeguards before Article 50 is triggered.

"We believe there is growing support for our view that Parliament should scrutinise the issues before Article 50 is triggered."

She said they would study the judgment in detail before decisions were made on how to proceed.

Senior Sinn Fein Stormont Assembly member John O'Dowd declared: "We will continue to explore every legal and political option open to us to ensure that the people who voted here to remain, the 56% of people who voted to remain within the EU, that their vote is respected, that their mandate is upheld and that the rights and entitlements of citizens here protected under various agreements including the Good Friday Agreement are protected and upheld going into the future."

Colum Eastwood, leader of the nationalist Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP), said he was determined to stand by the 56% of people who voted to remain within the EU.

He said they would continue to use every political and diplomatic route open to them to defend the will and the wishes of the people.

"We believe very strongly that Brexit would have a hugely detrimental effect on people here, that it would be a huge constitutional shock to people here and to our political process here and we have to do everything in our power to defend the interests of the people who we represent."

Press Association

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