The chief march steward on Bloody Sunday, Kevin McCorry, says the Dublin Government should oppose European Union attempts to isolate or bully the United Kingdom and give serious consideration to the possibility of following Britain out of the EU and the Eurozone.
Mr McCorry, once Chair of the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association (NICRA), made the call as one of the leading lights in the People’s Movement, which also counts former Green Party MEP Patricia McKenna, Donegal Independent TD, Thomas Pringle, and Dublin artist Robert Ballagh, who endorsed Martin McGuinness’ run for the Irish Presidency in 2011, as members.
Mr McCorry was recently a supporter of the unsuccessful candidacy of independent Dr Anne McCloskey in the Assembly election in Foyle.
In a statement, co-signed by Mr McCorry and Ms McKenna, the organisation suggested Dublin, should now also consider leaving the EU.
It said: “The Irish Government must voice its opposition to the statements by the four EU institutions, which attempt to bully and isolate the UK and it should not accept the setting of any precedent which allows some member states to meet without all others being in attendance.
“Government should immediately open a structured dialogue with London to help facilitate a smooth UK withdrawal from the EU especially in matters relating to North South relations. This should start immediately even before the British Government invokes Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union.
“The Government needs to decide whether it serves Brussels or the Irish people North and South, Unionist and Nationalist. So it must not allow itself to be drawn into any EU plans to punish the UK in order to deter other EU Members following its example.
“In light of the Brexit vote the Republic of Ireland should now give serious consideration to the possibility of following Britain out of the EU and the Eurozone.
“If Ireland wishes to leave the Eurozone, which has been a disaster for this country, leaving the EU is the only legal way to do this. Many economists now openly admit that joining was a serious mistake and has resulted in the financial mess Ireland now faces on a daily basis.
“Ireland does two-thirds of its foreign trade outside the nineteen-member Eurozone: two-thirds of its exports and three quarters of its imports. It is essential that Ireland has a special deal governing its UK trade, but while it stays in the EU it is Brussels Commission, not an independent Irish Government, that decides the Republic’s trade arrangements. In any case those running the present and all foreseeable Irish Governments share the anti-national and undemocratic mind-set of the Eurocrats.
“Rejection of the EU by the British people, despite the bullying and fear tactics they were subjected to throughout the campaign, demonstrates that people want to regain democratic control of their affairs.”