Northern Ireland unrest is the result of a reckless Brexit deal | Northern Ireland

Your editorial correctly identifies what is politically needed in the short term in response to the recent spike in loyalist violence in Northern Ireland: “The DUP should dial it down and Mr Johnson’s ministers must re-engage with making the protocol work as efficiently and unobtrusively as possible” (The Guardian view on the riots in Northern Ireland: situation dangerous”, 6 April).

However, in the long run, as the Alliance party’s Naomi Long rightly says, “we have to recognise, and this is fundamental, that when we decided that Brexit was the way forward, and when we chose a particularly hard Brexit, that there would be consequences. And those consequences would be felt most acutely in Northern Ireland”.

More than anything, the British government and Northern Irish unionists must accept the reality that the newly imposed barriers to GB-NI trade are fundamentally caused by Britain’s decision to leave the EU. The NI protocol is merely the means by which Brussels has tried to help the UK deal with the problems Boris Johnson recklessly and idly created with his very hard Brexit.
Joe McCarthy
Arbour Hill, Dublin

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