Bonnie Greer becomes national hero in Ireland after impassioned Brexit plan rebuke on Question Time: ‘Can we get her an Irish passport?’

‘I think I’ve been invited to every town and city in Ireland... it’s amazing,’ says author

Conrad Duncan
Saturday 05 October 2019 18:11
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'Ireland owes the UK nothing' Bonnie Greer stands up for Ireland's interests in Question Time debate

American novelist Bonnie Greer has spoken of her amazement at the positive response to her defence of Ireland in a BBC Question Time debate on Brexit.

Greer, who has lived in the UK since 1986, told audience members on the TV show on Thursday that Ireland owes the UK nothing, while speaking about Boris Johnson’s Brexit proposal.

The writer said she had since received a wave of support from the country.

“I think I’ve been invited to every town and city in Ireland and I’m very grateful, it’s amazing. I don’t know what to say. I thought I said something that everybody knew,” she told RTE Radio 1.

“I think a lot of British people, the people who responded to me, were fairly astonished.”

Ms Greer explained to audience members on Thursday that the US was unlikely to support a trade deal with the UK if it passed a Brexit deal that violates the Good Friday Agreement or disadvantaged Ireland.

“The Good Friday Agreement, in spite of its rather benign name … is a truce,” she said.

“And it’s a truce because the United States of America and the EU sat down with this country to make it happen. We have to be much more serious about this.”

Ms Greer added: “The United States is Irish. If anyone thinks that they’re going to get a deal through and have a trade relationship with the United States that shafts Ireland, you’ve got another thing coming.”

Her defence of Ireland’s interests received enthusiastic support on social media.

Declan Lawn, a writer and filmmaker, wrote: “Can we get Bonnie Greer an Irish passport so she can be president after Michael D [Higgins]?”

“Oh my god Bonnie Greer, if Ireland ever has a Queen, [I] nominate you,” Nicola Coughlan, an actor known for her role in Derry Girls, added.

Mr Johnson’s proposal would create two new borders for Northern Ireland, with custom checks on trade with the Republic and a regulatory control border down the Irish Sea between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

However, that proposal has been rejected by the European parliament, which said it was not “even remotely” acceptable.

Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, said the EU was “open but still unconvinced” by Mr Johnson’s proposal.

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