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David Davis shows contemptuous attitude toward border issue

Once again, the Brexit secretary David Davis has shown complete contempt for the people of Northern Ireland by refusing an invitation to answer questions on the Irish border issue.

Mr Davis has turned down a request from Westminster's Northern Ireland Affairs Committee to update members on the government's plans to deliver a frictionless border between north and south.

It is a move that will be rightly regarded as a snub to the committee, which published a report in March saying that the government's plans for a post-Brexit border lacked an obvious technical solution.

The committee had offered Mr Davis the opportunity to update them on the progress that has been made on achieving a frictionless border but - inexplicably - he has chosen not to do so.

This is despite the fact that Brexit is the biggest constitutional issue facing the government and the border is the biggest single obstacle to the type of accommodation Theresa May and her cabinet wishes to achieve with the EU.

Mr Davis's dismissal of the committee is especially hard to understand as the membership includes three DUP MPs and Kate Hoey, who are not exactly hostile to Brexit, while the chairman, Andrew Murrison, is a committed Leave campaigner.

He expressed his disappointment at Mr Davis's refusal, pointing out that Michel Barnier, the EU's chief negotiator, managed to find the time to provide evidence to the committee.

Mr Davis's offhand approach will come as little surprise to people in the north given his persistent refusal to visit the border region before making an unannounced trip last month for which he was roundly criticised and resulted in an apology for not following protocol.

In the week that Theresa May made inaccurate statements about investigations into legacy cases, there is a sense that the government has no real interest in the concerns of people in Northern Ireland.

The DUP, which is propping up this government, should take note.

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