Speed Reads

irish border

Trump offers some befuddling commentary on the future of the Irish border

The legacy of the border that runs between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland — which is part of the United Kingdom — is a complex one. After decades of sectarian violence, a fragile peace has held since 1998; at the moment, there's a frictionless border in place. But as Ireland and the U.K. prepare for a hard Brexit, there are fears that re-establishing a "hard" border as a result of the U.K. leaving the European Union could threaten that peace. President Trump, though, doesn't want anybody to worry.

While meeting with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar on Wednesday, Trump, who has expressed support for a no-deal Brexit, said that he understands the Irish border is a point of contention. But, he reassured Varadkar it would all be just just fine — he knows a thing or two about tense situations surrounding borders, after all.

Trump's stance on the Irish border was a bit unclear when he addressed reporters alongside Varadkar, though the latter later clarified that the president agrees it should remain open. Trump said he was confident everything would work out "with your wall, your border." Varadkar was quick to remind Trump that everyone hopes to avoid a hard border or a wall, to which Trump replied "I think you do," noting that "the way it works now is good."