Canada won’t make ‘veiled threat’ over Irish border, U.K. envoy Goodale says

By Dylan Robertson

OTTAWA – Canada’s envoy to the United Kingdom says Ottawa will not suspend trade negotiations with the British government over concerns about the Irish border.

Britain has announced plans to change its arrangement with the European

Union, which could eventually reinstate a border between the region of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

That has led to fears of a return to the decades of violence that ended with a 1998 peace agreement, which made the border almost invisible.

Last week, Sinn Fein MP John Finucane came to Ottawa and asked Canada to stop its trade negotiations until London changes course.

Canada’s high commissioner to Britain, Ralph Goodale, says that would amount to “a veiled threat.”

He says Ottawa will instead offer help to avoid a conflict while proceeding with trade talks.