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Brexit 'biggest opportunity since WW2' says DUP man

War reference crass says ex-soldier Doug Beattie

By Victoria Leonard

A DUP councillor who described Brexit as "one of the best opportunities we have had since the Second World War" has had his remark slammed as "insensitive and crass" by an Army veteran MLA.

During a debate at Ards and North Down Borough Council on Wednesday on the impact of Brexit, former mayor Alan Graham took issue with the words of Alliance councillor Andrew Muir, who said Brexit was "likely to be one of the biggest economic challenges to hit the UK in a generation, if not since the Second World War".

Mr Graham hit back, saying he saw Brexit as "one of the best opportunities we have had since the Second World War, not one of the biggest threats since the Second World War".

Ulster Unionist MLA Doug Beattie, who was decorated with the Military Cross, described the remarks as "crass".

"The language he is using. It's incredibly insensitive, and such language trivialises the sacrifices made in World War Two," he said.

Yesterday Mr Graham said he stood by his comment, and accused those who took issue with them of trying to "warp" their meaning.

"I'm not planning to withdraw the remark," he said.

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