The Minister for Finance has confirmed that Revenue Commissioners are currently in the process of identifying location points along the border for the return of full customs checkpoints as it prepares for Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union.
Following this confirmation Sinn Féin's Pearse Doherty TD said the prospect of full border checkpoints being established at various locations in counties Donegal, Louth, Monaghan, Cavan, and Leitrim seems to be very much on the cards
The disclosure has renewed fears of a return to a hard border following Brexit.
Deputy Doherty said: “The confirmation which I’ve received from the Minister today that Revenue Commissioners are preparing for the return of a hard border, and are now actively identifying sites along the border to locate customs checkpoints post Brexit is extremely worrying.
“If anyone was still in any doubt that the establishment of a hard border between the north and south was not a distinct possibility then today’s admission from the Government will have dispelled those doubts," he said.
“This is a major cause for concern for the island of Ireland as a whole, but particularly for counties along the border where communities there have such close social and economic links.
“The re-introduction of full customs checkpoints would cause considerable economic upheaval, and poses a very real threat to our economy and to employment on this island – both north and south," he said.
Deputy Doherty added that the Government must advance this case for a special designation status for the north within the EU and it must work to garner the support of the twenty six EU member states in order to guarantee the best possible deal for this island and its people post Brexit.