Updated: 07/12/17 : 07:45:37
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Taoiseach willing to consider any proposed changes in Brexit text

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said he is willing to consider any proposed changes to the text of the deal that would allow the Brexit talks to soon move to Phase 2.

However, Mr Varadkar said he has little room to manoeuvre on what was outlined last Monday.

Finding words that would get the backing of all parties on the issue of the border between Ireland and the UK is something the British government is working on.

RTÉ reports that the Taoiseach said he will look at any proposals with an open mind.

Following a phone call with British Prime Minister Theresa May yesterday, one idea mentioned was the possibility of adding a clause to say any agreement was not about the break-up of the United Kingdom.

No wording has yet been forwarded to Dublin via the European Commission Task Force but it is expected to arrive soon.

However, the Taoiseach has warned that any change must not alter the substance of what was almost agreed last Monday.

And that means getting a guarantee that a hard border will be avoided once the UK leaves the European Union.

Mr Varadkar said the rules do not have to be identical on both sides of the border but sufficiently aligned to allow for continued north-south cooperation.

Last night, the Government got full support for its position from Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

Today, the UK's House of Commons' Brexit Committee is to visit Armagh to hear about the risks and opportunities of Brexit for Northern Ireland.

The cross-party committee will meet people from the local community and from Northern Ireland businesses.  

The committee will take evidence from the PSNI, Customs and Revenue in a public session this morning.

The day is part of a programme of visits which the committee is undertaking to get beyond Westminster and gather a range of views about Brexit, what it means for different areas, and what the future relationship with the EU should look like.