Sinn Féin have successfully passed a motion at March’s full meeting of Derry City & Strabane District Council calling on the Irish government to open an Irish passport office in the north.
Speaking after the meeting, Cllr Colly Kelly said:
“Last year, over 82’000 people living in the six counties made an application for an Irish passport. This is a significant increase from figures released in 2015, the year before Brexit, which saw 53,715 people in the north apply for Irish passports.
“These figures demonstrate a clear need for a passport office to be located here in the north, not only to meet ever increasing demand, but also to enhance service provision.
“This is also a strong indicator that many people living in the north, Britain and Europe that have Irish connections are looking for Irish passports in order to safeguard their position with for the future in a post-Brexit scenario, this also includes our unionist and loyalist neighbours.
“It’s time for the Irish government to make practical investment and infrastructural development, and also better service delivery for citizens who live along the border corridor, particularly those here in the north west in places such as Derry, Donegal, Sligo, Cavan and Dundalk.
“By passing this motion, this Council has sent a clear message to the Irish government that we, as Irish citizens, deserve access to Irish services and now is the time for them to deliver these fundamental rights”