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EU blackmailing Government using Northern Ireland, says Ukip's Coburn

By David Young

Scottish Ukip leader David Coburn told a Belfast audience at the weekend that the European Union was using Northern Ireland to 'blackmail' the British Government over Brexit.

The MEP was speaking at the party's annual general meeting in Northern Ireland.

"It is a disgrace that the European Union is using the tragedy of Northern Ireland to blackmail the British Government into handing over more money as a Brexit divorce settlement. This must stop," Mr Coburn told party members.

He added: "The Irish Republic should not use Brexit to try to achieve its fantasy of a united Ireland."

Mr Coburn also slated Scottish nationalists for their attachment to the EU.

"The Scottish Nationalist Party don't want independence," he said.

"They want to hand Scotland over to Europe. They want our fishing grounds handed over to Europe, our oil handed over to Europe - and they want the European currency."

Mr Coburn said that the PR electoral system in Northern Ireland offered Ukip a chance of representation in the regions that had proved hard to achieve at Westminster.

"This is Ukip's opportunity. We've had a couple of bad years, but I see a future for us, and we must seize it."

The party has just three councillors here. It currently has no MLAs or MPs. Former MLA David McNarry is no longer the party's leader in Northern Ireland.

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