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Boyd Barrett accuses Government of making ‘sustained attack’ on Irish neutrality

admin | June 9, 2022

People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett has accused the Government of making a “sustained attack” on Ireland’s neutrality. Mr Barrett was reacting to comments made by Taoiseach Micheál Martin who yesterday said that Ireland would not need to hold a referendum to join Nato as it is a policy decision of the Government. Mr Barrett described the Taoiseach’s comments as “both incorrect and also very, very alarming” during an interview on Newstalk Breakfast. “It suggests first of all that there is a very sustained attack going on by the Government recently… to further undermine our neutrality and to try and drag us towards Nato. “If you join Nato you have an obligation to Nato to come to the aid of any state that is part of that mutual defence pact. “So they would in fact be overriding the sovereignty of Dáil Éireann, and of the democratically elected representatives of the people of this country”. Meanwhile, separately Mr Barrett says paying members of the Defence Forces “properly” could help to boost numbers. “We do not even have the recommended number of soldiers within our Defence Forces that we should have. “I do think we should pay our soldiers – I do not think we need to dramatically increase our defence expenditure above and beyond that. “And I certainly don’t think that we should be, though it’s clear the Government are, trying to move us in line with Nato’s requirement that governments spend 2 per cent of GDP on defence”

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