DUP MAY CALL SINN FEIN’S ‘BLUFF’ OVER BORDER POLL

Minister Arlene Foster says DUP considering Sinn Fein border pole

Minister Arlene Foster says DUP considering Sinn Fein border pole

THE DUP is considering whether to support a Sinn Fein’s campaign to hold a border pole on Irish unity.

The revelation was made by DUP Trade and Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster during an interview for the BBC’s Stephen Nolan show on Tuesday morning.

She told the Radio Ulster presenter that she had already held discussions with senior colleagues, including party leader Peter Robinson.

Mrs Foster said the feeling was a pro-union vote would consolidate Northern Ireland’s position within the UK.

Last week, Mitchel McLauglin of Sinn Fein told the Assembly: “People have the chance to change the constitutional position on this island.

“If it could happen tomorrow I would, but I will wait for a chance to do it democratically.”

Ms Foster told the BBC on Tuesday a border poll would show that a clear majority of people in Northern Ireland want to remain in the United Kingdom.

“Sinn Fein are trying to cause instability in Northern Ireland,” she said.

“If we have the border poll then that instability goes away and, in actual fact, what we have is a very clear validation of the union and that’s something we’re looking at at the moment.

“So I’m saying to Mitchel McLaughlin and I’m saying to him very clearly, ‘We may just call your bluff on this one Mitchel, and be very careful what you wish for’.”

Mr McLaughlin said the DUP approach was “refreshing”.

“We will accept and we will respect the outcome of that referendum,” he said.

Previously, the DUP has said that a referendum on a united Ireland would be a “waste of money”.

The Good Friday Agreement contains a provision for a border poll.

The power to trigger such a referendum does not reside with the Stormont parties, but the secretary of state.

A border poll was last held in Northern Ireland in March 1973. It was largely boycotted by nationalists.

 

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