December 11, 2019

KENNEDY CALLS ON UK LEADERS TO SUPPORT GOOD FRIDAY AGREEMENT

Urges commitment to peace accord ahead of parliamentary election

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Joe Kennedy III today called on the leaders of the United Kingdom’s three major political parties to reaffirm their support for the Good Friday Agreement (GFA) in advance of tomorrow’s general parliamentary election. Joined by Congressman Richard Neal (MA-01) and Congressman Brendan Boyle (PA-02), Kennedy wrote to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn, and Liberal Democrats Party Leader Jo Swinson urging them to demonstrate continued commitment to an open Irish border and the continued implementation of the GFA.

“Regardless of the electoral outcome on December 12 and the eventual framework, if any, of the U.K.’s departure from the European Union, it is essential that the hard-won peace of the GFA be preserved and not undermined by any Brexit calculations,” wrote the lawmakers. “That peace includes not only an open border between the Republic of Ireland and the province of Northern Ireland but also commitments to improved protections of human, civil and democratic rights, and economic justice for all the communities of Northern Ireland as enshrined in the GFA.”

They continued, “The political uncertainties unleashed by Brexit have had a negative impact on all the communities of Northern Ireland. It has slowed essential new inward investment to a halt, ratcheted up sectarian tensions, and contributed to the ongoing stalemate over restoring self-government at Stormont… As leaders of the largest political parties in the United Kingdom, we urge you to take all and any steps in your power to ensure that peace prevails in Northern Ireland, including a continuing commitment to an open Irish border and the protection of human and civil rights for all.”

To read the full letter, please click here. In October, Kennedy co-authored an op/ed in the Boston Globe opposing a “No-Deal Brexit” with Congressman Neal, Congressman David Cicilline and Congressman Bill Keating. Earlier this year, he also authored a letter with 23 of his colleagues to Prime Minister Theresa May expressing concerns that any potential bilateral free trade agreement would be threatened if a hard border were re-imposed.

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For Immediate Release:
December 11, 2019 

Contact:
Dan Black (202) 225-5931