World Bulletin / News Desk
“The withdrawal agreement must include a legally binding backstop so that there can not be a hard border on the island of Ireland in the future,” Varadkar said., adding “a backstop cannot have an expiry date.”
Speaking at a joint news conference alongside the European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in Dublin, Varadkar said: “Unless everything is agreed, nothing is agreed.”
The Irish premier said there was not much time left to reach an agreement between the EU and the U.K.
Showing full solidarity with Ireland, Juncker said the border issue was not a question between Ireland and the U.K. but an issue between the EU and the U.K.
“We wanted to make clear again and again that Ireland is not alone,” Juncker said.
“We have Ireland backed by 26 member states and by the [European] Commission; this will not change,” he added.
Juncker said he was “strongly against any temptation” to try to isolate Ireland and not to conclude a withdrawal deal.
“Ireland has to be part of the deal,” he added.
Talks between the U.K. and the EU have focused on the future arrangements on the Irish border. All parties say they do not want to see the return of a hard border between Ireland and the U.K. region in the North.
The border issue has been one of the thorniest issues in Brexit talks.