North/South Ministerial Council: Plenary and Institutional

Part of Ministerial Statement – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 1:00 pm on 18th January 2021.

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Photo of Michelle O'Neill Michelle O'Neill Sinn Féin 1:00 pm, 18th January 2021

As the Member recognised, we have raised this issue on every occasion that we had an opportunity to do so. It is really regrettable that there has not yet been a resolution. I hope that Wednesday's meeting will allow an opportunity for a way forward. Issues have been raised about the legal implications of data sharing. We believe that those issues have been resolved, so I do not see any barrier now to information being shared. That works both ways: it is North/South, South/North and east-west. It is really important that those things are looked at purely from a public health point of view and that no one plays politics, because it is far too serious. A conversation at the highest level of government is the way to resolve these things. There is a political solution to the travel issue, and I hope that that can be found.