Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland: EU Proposals - Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 12:02 pm on 21st October 2021.

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Photo of Baroness Chapman of Darlington Baroness Chapman of Darlington Shadow Minister for the Cabinet Office, Opposition Whip (Lords) 12:02 pm, 21st October 2021

I take it from the answers the Minister provided to the previous Question that he did not consult Ministers in Northern Ireland about his new draft text and does not intend to publish it for the benefit of politicians in this country. I gently say to him that contentious issues in Northern Ireland are never resolved without the engagement of senior figures, and he needs to take this far more seriously. Rather than flying around Europe making speeches, why is he not speaking with Mr Šefčovič in Belfast to thrash out these issues? The people of Northern Ireland and the public here will tire of this endless Brexit drama vortex that he seems to want to keep us captured in. We want solutions and he will find them only through dialogue, and I suggest that that should take place in Belfast.