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Biden committed to preserving peace in Northern Ireland

Biden committed to preserving peace in Northern Ireland

US presidential candidate Joe Biden is committed to preserving the hard-earned peace and stability in Northern Ireland, according to his foreign policy advisor.

Biden, who has roots in Cooley and visited the peninsula a number of times in recent years, is the Democratic candidate to become the next US president and will go head to head with Donald Trump this November.

In a tweet responding to the latest Brexit developments, Mr Biden’s adviser Antony Blinken wrote: “As the UK and EU work out their relationship, any arrangements must protect the Good Friday Agreement and prevent the return of a hard border.”

It comes amid concerns over plans by the UK government to introduce a new bill to override elements of Prime Minister’s Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal with Brussels.

Northern Ireland secretary Brandon Lewis told MPs in the House of Commons that the legislation to ensure Northern Ireland could continue to enjoy unfettered access to markets in the rest of the UK would breach international law in a “very specific and limited way”.

This is not the first time that Mr Biden and other senior Democrats have voiced support for the Northern Ireland peace process.

Last month, the Biden campaign held a virtual rally for Irish-American voters and Democratic Congressman Brendan Boyle told the event that the Brexit process had put hard-won peace and justice in Ireland at risk.

“We fortunately have many allies on Capitol Hill. One place that has not been an ally is the Oval Office,” Congressman Boyle said.

“What a refreshing change it will be to have Joe Biden come this January. To have someone who supports the Good Friday Agreement and wants to protect it. Someone who is not mindlessly cheerleading for Brexit no matter the cost,” he added.

Last November, while campaigning for the Democratic nomination, Mr Biden said he cared a great deal about the Northern Ireland peace process and that he would continue to put pressure on Britain to ensure there is no return to a hard border after Brexit.