Coronavirus: 23 further deaths and 1,378 new cases in Ireland

Grant Boone
January 26, 2021

The poll comes after former British Chancellor George Osborne said last week that he suspects the majority of people in England and overseas 'would not care' if Northern Ireland left the United Kingdom and joined with the Republic to make a United Ireland.

She was speaking after a poll commissioned by the Sunday Times in NI found 51% of people want a referendum on Irish unity in the next five years.

Respondents also said they believed there would be a united Ireland within 10 years, by a margin of 48% to 44%.

The DUP leader also said it was "very disappointing" to see some nationalist parties across the United Kingdom talk about constitutional politics during the COVID-19 pandemic. It revealed voters across the United Kingdom believe Scotland is likely to become independent within the next decade, but in Wales and England support for independence is low.

Lucidtalk polled 2,392 people in Northern Ireland aged 16 and over between January 15 and 18. We can overcome the barriers of partition and build a new Ireland'.

DUP leader Arlene Foster, however, said that it would be "absolutely reckless" to be distracted by a border poll in the middle of a pandemic at a time when Northern Irish people are "coming together" in the fight against the coronavirus.

The deputy first minister called on the Irish government "to step up preparations" for a poll on the border issue.

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"We only came back into devolution after three years out of devolution in January last year and then we came into the pandemic in March", she said. "We just need to keep working together and make sure we get to the end of this journey and make sure we get through it so that we can rebuild our economy and society".

Asked whether, economically, Northern Ireland is now as much part of the European Union as the United Kingdom following Brexit, Ms Foster replied: 'Absolutely not. Our biggest market so far is Great Britain and will continue to be Great Britain, both in terms of who we send our services to and who we receive our services from. What we need to have is people working with us so that we can overcome this terrible virus.

Northern Ireland is 1/3 to be the next region apart from Scotland to hold an independence referendum.

"I want to have a legal referendum, that's what I'm going to seek the authority of the Scottish people for in May", she told Andrew Marr.

The SNP is expected to perform well in Scottish Parliament elections in the summer of 2021, with leader Nicola Sturgeon likely to use the election victory as a mandate to hold IndyRef2.

"Why don't we have an 11-point plan to ensure businesses get the support they need?"

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