IRELAND’S Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney met with US Special Envoy to Northern Ireland, Mick Mulvaney today, ahead of a trip to Washington DC this week.
The pair discussed the need for greater protection of the Good Friday Agreement as well as the challenges posed by Brexit, the Covid-19 pandemic and Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s controversial Internal Market Bill.
Speaking after the meeting, which took place this morning, Mr Coveney said: "We discussed a number of important issues, including the welcome return to operation of the power-sharing institutions in Northern Ireland earlier this year, the important work that has now resumed on a North-South basis, and the challenges arising in the context of Covid-19 and of Brexit.”
He added: "I emphasised our real concern at the current approach of the UK Government and the vital importance of the full implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement and the Protocol on Ireland / Northern Ireland, for the protection of the Good Friday Agreement and the achievements of the peace process.
"Those achievements were made possible by the sustained engagement of successive US Administrations and Special Envoys, and friends of Ireland across the United States.”
Mr Coveney added that he was “looking forward to” his trip to the US this week.
While there he will meet with Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi and Congressman Richie Neal, whom he described as “valued advocates for the protection of the peace process and the Good Friday Agreement".