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Ireland Brexit deal: Taoiseach Leo Varadkar says new solution for Northern Ireland backstop 'does what we need it to do'

09:50  18 october  2019
09:50  18 october  2019 Source:   msn.com

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Ireland's Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Leo Varadkar arrives at the European Union leaders summit dominated by Brexit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Toby Melville © Catalyst Images Ireland's Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Leo Varadkar arrives at the European Union leaders summit dominated by Brexit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Toby Melville Leo Varadkar has conceded that the backstop is gone.

But the Taoiseach said he has no problems with this and that he is happy because it has been replaced with a new solution that delivers the same goals.

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Ireland's Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Leo Varadkar and German Chancellor Angela Merkel talk as they attend the European Union leaders summit dominated by Brexit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw © Catalyst Images Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Ireland's Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Leo Varadkar and German Chancellor Angela Merkel talk as they attend the European Union leaders summit dominated by Brexit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw The Fine Gael leader convened a special meeting of Cabinet where ministers were given full details of the deal.

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The Taoiseach was speaking to reporters from the Europa building in Brussels on the way into the historic EU Council meeting following a deal being struck on Brexit.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, left, speaks with European Council President Donald Tusk, center, and Finnish Prime Minister Antti Rinne prior to the start of a tripartite summit in Brussels, Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2019. European Union and British negotiators have failed to get a breakthrough in the Brexit talks during a frantic all-night session and will continue seeking a compromise on the eve of Thursday's crucial EU summit. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) © Catalyst Images European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, left, speaks with European Council President Donald Tusk, center, and Finnish Prime Minister Antti Rinne prior to the start of a tripartite summit in Brussels, Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2019. European Union and British negotiators have failed to get a breakthrough in the Brexit talks during a frantic all-night session and will continue seeking a compromise on the eve of Thursday's crucial EU summit. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) The careful political choreography saw at the same time another press conference taking place across the road in the EU Commission’s Berlaymont building with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

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All three men were on hand to let the world know that the UK and EU negotiators have signed off on an agreement.

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM - OCTOBER 17: UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (C) reacts to a greeting from Hungarian President Viktor Orban as Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar (R) looks on at a summit of European Union leaders on October 17, 2019 in Brussels, Belgium. EU and British negotiators come to an agreement earlier today on the United Kingdom's departure from the EU.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images) © Catalyst Images BRUSSELS, BELGIUM - OCTOBER 17: UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (C) reacts to a greeting from Hungarian President Viktor Orban as Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar (R) looks on at a summit of European Union leaders on October 17, 2019 in Brussels, Belgium. EU and British negotiators come to an agreement earlier today on the United Kingdom's departure from the EU. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images) It is up to the British Parliament now to ratify this at a special meeting of the House of Commons this Saturday.

This will pave the way for the UK leaving the EU in an orderly fashion in two weeks’ time on November 1st.

Leo Varadkar standing next to a car: Taoiseach Leo Varadkar arrives for an European Union Summit at European Union Headquarters in Brussels on October 17, 2019 © JULIEN WARNAND/POOL/AFP via Getty Images Taoiseach Leo Varadkar arrives for an European Union Summit at European Union Headquarters in Brussels on October 17, 2019 Mr Varadkar said: “As things stand we have a draft agreement between the European Union on one hand and the British Government on the other.

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“I think it’s a good agreement.

“It allows the United Kingdom to leave the United Kingdom in an orderly fashion which is very important for businesses and citizens across the European Union and also for the UK, and also creates a unique solution for Northern Ireland recognising the unique history and geography of Northern Ireland.”

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 10: Arlene Foster, leader of the DUP leaves Downing Street following talks with UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson on September 10, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images) © Catalyst Images LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 10: Arlene Foster, leader of the DUP leaves Downing Street following talks with UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson on September 10, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images) He said that the backstop "has been replaced".

Boris Johnson et al. standing next to a man in a suit and tie: UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (centre left) with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar (2nd right) and Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel at a round table for the European Council summit at EU headquarters in Brussels © Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (centre left) with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar (2nd right) and Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel at a round table for the European Council summit at EU headquarters in Brussels  

“It’s been replaced with a unique solution for Northern Ireland, but that unique solution does what we need it to do.

“It avoids a hard border between North and South.

“It protects the Northern Ireland economy.

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Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson gestures during a news conference with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker after agreeing on the Brexit deal, at the sidelines of the European Union leaders summit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir © Catalyst Images Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson gestures during a news conference with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker after agreeing on the Brexit deal, at the sidelines of the European Union leaders summit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir “It protects the Single Market and our place in it.

“And also crucially we were happy to accept this.

“It takes account of the democratic wishes of the people of Northern Ireland.

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“I’ve always expressed the view and that we would never seek to hold Ireland in a place long term against the will of the majority of the people.”

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, European Union's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson meet after agreeing on the Brexit deal, at the sidelines of the European Union leaders summit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman © Catalyst Images European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, European Union's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson meet after agreeing on the Brexit deal, at the sidelines of the European Union leaders summit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman Mr Juncker said: “Good to see you and good to see the Prime Minister, my friend Boris Johnson.

“We have a deal. And this deal means that there is no need for any kind of prolongation.

“This is a fair and balanced agreement. 

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“It provides certainty where Brexit creates uncertainty. 

“It protects the rights of our citizens and it protects peace and stability on the island of Ireland. 

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Ireland's Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Leo Varadkar and German Chancellor Angela Merkel talk as they attend the European Union leaders summit dominated by Brexit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw © Catalyst Images Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Ireland's Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Leo Varadkar and German Chancellor Angela Merkel talk as they attend the European Union leaders summit dominated by Brexit, in Brussels, Belgium October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw “There will be no border on the island of Ireland. And the Single Market will be protected.

“This deal is not about us, the deal is about people and peace.

“And I look forward to continue my conversations with Boris, because we will start the negotiations on the future relations immediately after the deal will have been approved.”

Mr Johnson said: “I would like to pay particular tribute to Jean Claude and to Michel Barnier and all your teams, the negotiating teams in the Commission.

“I do believe that this deal represents a very good deal for the EU and for the UK.

“It’s a reasonable fair outcome and reflects the large amount of work that’s been undertaken by both sides.”

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