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What is most crucial in a unity debate is ensuring the conversation doesn't drive communities further apart

Heather Wilson


Dialogue, even with those from whom we stand ideologically a world apart, is the only way forward, says Heather Wilson

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Controversy: A man walks past graffiti in Belfast city centre protesting about an Irish Sea border

Controversy: A man walks past graffiti in Belfast city centre protesting about an Irish Sea border

Controversy: A man walks past graffiti in Belfast city centre protesting about an Irish Sea border

Beyond the conversations of political anoraks and the medium of Twitter, the question of the constitutional future of Northern Ireland is gaining legs.

The injection of life into this debate was substantiated by results of a new poll carried out by LucidTalk for the Sunday Times only a few weeks ago, which indicated a majority of voters in Northern Ireland want a border poll to be held in the next five years.

It seems quite a stretch to imagine that in the space of five years we will be in a place where preparations for a referendum on Northern Ireland's constitutional future - not yet under way in a consolidated, or official, manner - will be near completion, an island-wide campaign in motion and the date for a border poll set in stone.


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