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Sammy's thumbing nose at own party over Brexit, claims anti-EU McNarry

By Noel McAdam

Published 26/11/2015

DUP MP Sammy Wilson shakes hands with Ukip leader Nigel Farage at a Leave The EU event
DUP MP Sammy Wilson shakes hands with Ukip leader Nigel Farage at a Leave The EU event

Ukip MLA David McNarry has accused Sammy Wilson of side-stepping his party's policy on withdrawal from the European Union after the DUP MP shared a platform with Nigel Farage.

Mr Wilson, the former Stormont Finance Minister, posed for pictures with Mr Farage and voiced his support for pulling out of the EU.

The East Antrim MP also blasted Prime Minister David Cameron's stance on renegotiating the UK's relationship with the EU as "pathetic".

But Mr McNarry said the comments gave the impression the DUP was supporting the Brexit campaign, on which Ukip has been "leading the charge".

"The DUP then put out a clarification saying they are holding out for David Cameron's ill-fated renegotiations, and Sammy had in fact gone against the party line," Mr McNarry added. "Are the DUP in disarray? At our regional conference at the weekend, I called for the DUP to quit fence-sitting on the issue of leaving the EU."

Mr Wilson met Mr Farage at a Leave The EU event and argued: "It is evident from the pathetic demand for minimal changes to the terms of our membership of the EU that the Prime Minister was not serious about ensuring that the UK got a better deal from Europe and the only course of action was to negotiate a relationship which fell short of EU membership.

"We can have the best of both worlds: access to the European market but freedom to determine laws and trading arrangements.

"There are those who argue that being outside the EU would disadvantage us economically. They said the same thing about our decision not to joint the eurozone. They were wrong on that issue and they are equally wrong on the question of EU membership."

But Sinn Fein MEP Martina Anderson hit out: "The DUP policy of playing a game of in-out politics seems to be alive and well.

"Sammy Wilson calling the British Government's position 'pathetic' while posing for photographs with Farage flies in the face of Arlene Foster and Peter Robinson selling the North as the gateway to Europe."

The DUP has previously said: "(We) believe the EU needs to change. We support renegotiation to bring about that change. Then it's the choice of the people."

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