Northern Ireland news

Small majority of people in the Republic are in favour of a united Ireland - poll

Fifty-three per cent said `Yes To Unification'; 19 per cent said `No To Unification' and 28 per cent `Don't Know'. Picture by Rui Vieira/PA Wire

A SMALL majority of people in the Republic are in favour of a united Ireland, according to a RTÉ-commissioned poll.

Claire Byrne Live on RTE One last night was asking: `Is it time for a United Ireland?'

It commissioned the poll from Amárach Research a market research agency, which asked 1,000 adults on a smartphone poll how they would vote on a United Ireland.

Fifty-three per cent said `Yes To Unification'; 19 per cent said `No To Unification' and 28 per cent `Don't Know'.

On the show to discuss the issue with Taoiseach Micheál Martin, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar and Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald.

It also featured contributions from guests on the show DUP MP Ian Paisley and Northern Ireland Justice Minister Naomi Long, as well as former Ulster and Ireland rugby player Andrew Trimble, GAA pundit and lawyer Joe Brolly.

The programme explored whether the Republic could remain unchanged if there was a united Ireland, or whether it would need a new flag, anthem and identity incorporating the `British identity'.

Ms McDonald said the tricolour `Green, White and Orange' already reflects Ireland and "we are now in the endgame".

Mr Varadkar said "we should have the conversation and I believe in reunification", but "the vision of John Hume" with "a different pathway" from Sinn Féin's call for a border poll date.

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