DUP continues its campaign for the Irish who are culturally British

Gregory Campbell of the DUP continues to campaign for what he believes are the large numbers of southerners living in Northern Ireland who are just itching to take up naturalised British citizenship. This even though just 270 out of an estimated population of 40,000 took up the option last year. Campbell blames red tape for the low uptake and believes huge numbers would be prepared to hold a British passport.

“There are thousands who want this and would be entitled to it. They regard themselves as British culturally, but just happen to have been born on the wrong side of the border.”

This isn’t the first time Slugger has followed this particular campaign. It’s something that Campbell and the DUP seem to return to on regular occasions.

Campbell previously launched a campaign for those Irish citizens born in the Irish Republic but now living in Northern Ireland who wanted an automatic right to British citizenship to send postcards to highlight their plight. While no postcards were produced subsequently, the issue of automatic British citizenship for citizens of the Irish Republic seems to remain an issue – for the DUP at least.

Campbell’s frustration seems to be mainly based on the fact that people from Northern Ireland have much easier access to Irish passports.

“There are people who have never lived there but can just apply to offices in Dublin and get it.”

In 2005, there 36,000 passports issued to people from Northern Ireland compared with 32,000 in 2004 and 28,000 in 2003.

The growing number comes partly from the Express Passport Service that was introduced to Northern Ireland’s post office network in 2003 and is still being expanded.

At the end of 2005, Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs estimated that more than 200,000 people in NI held an Irish passport.

  • David

    I am less surprised by this than the commentator. A significant number of border unionists who were born in places like Monaghan and Donegal are affected by this one.

  • wu

    Definitely a good idea. Everyone on the island has the right to be British, Irish or both – and more and more are choosing to be both.

    Last Saturday at Croke Park showed the way, a great unifying moment with God Save the Queen, Amhrann na bhFiann and Ireland’s Call reflecting the great diversity of identities here.

    Lets bring the passport laws up to date and ensure equality for everyone, especially the minority communities in the border counties.

  • kensei

    “Definitely a good idea. Everyone on the island has the right to be British, Irish or both – and more and more are choosing to be both.”

    Actually, only people in the six have the right to choose.

    Last Saturday at Croke Park showed the way, a great unifying moment with God Save the Queen, Amhrann na bhFiann and Ireland’s Call reflecting the great diversity of identities here. ”

    GSTQ represented England.

  • wu

    God Save the Queen represents the unionist tradition in Ireland too, and was sung by many Irish fans (as Tom Kelly pointed out in his excellent article on Monday).

  • Henry94

    kensai

    Everyone on the island has the right to be British, Irish or both –

    Does everyone in Britain have the right to be Irish? Or French?

    There is an issue in the north not in the rest of the country.

    Having said that, it is entirely a matter for the British who they give citizenship rights to.

  • Observer

    This is something that has been going on for too long.

    People living in the Republic should be entitled to British citzenship.

    This should have been recognised back in 1998.

    Due credit to Campbell for continuing to raise this issue.

    However I see difficulties ahead. The Irish government will refuse to accept this, why? Because they refuse to accept dual nationality themselves and indeed the British identity as being Irish. In short it messes up their definition of ‘Irishness’; which is a regional identity within the British Isles. One can be Irish, yet hold a British passport. Thats the way it should be!

  • Yokel

    This is either a pretty harmless campaign or its designed to show something up…

  • George

    David, wu and Observer,

    the DUP are only referring to people from the Irish Republic now living in Northern Ireland.

    There is no mention of people from the Irish Republic living in the rest of the UK or indeed of those living in the Irish Republic itself.

  • manichaeism

    I don’t see how the Irish government can refuse to accept this! The British government can give a right to British citizenship to anyone they want to. They can give it to people from Timbuktu if they want.

  • Henry94

    manichaeism

    Exactly. Nothing at all to do with the Irish government.

  • kensei

    As pointed out before, this has bugger all to do with the Irish government. Whoever the British what to give their citizenship too is their business.

  • Observer

    A change is needed in the legislation in the Irish Republic.

  • Henry94

    Observer

    No it isn’t. We gave the British their independence a long time ago. They can pass any law they like.

  • George

    Observer,
    This has nothing to do with the Irish Republic.

    Campbell is calling on the British Home Office to address the issue as they are the ones who deal with British naturalisation.

    As I said above, this has absolutely nothing to do with people living in the Irish Republic or indeed the rest of the UK.

    It refers to people born in the Irish Republic but now living in Northern Ireland.

  • What change, Observer?

  • Harry

    In short it messes up their definition of ‘Irishness’; which is a regional identity within the British Isles. One can be Irish, yet hold a British passport. Thats the way it should be!

    I’m getting really sick and tired of this shit. We need to throw the british off this island so that we are no longer subject to these colonial buffoons and their self-regarding utterly disingenuous sophistry.
    Why don’t you piss off over to the Hook of Holland and take over a third of that country – you can tell them that they’re just low germans anyway and so saxons, so you have a right, with a majority of 60 million, to take them over. Perhaps a Dutch Greenflag will show up to explain how its the legitimate right of the british to protect their right flank and access to european seaways. And a Dutch Crateagus can tell us all how its sheer provinicialism on the part of those Dutch who disagree – after all, the historical political and trading relationship of humberside with the Dutch republic – what with the Hanseatic leagues and the Huguenots, not to mention King Billy – is oh so complex and intertwined.

    Sure it makes sense to take a chunk of Holland, and its in their own interests too since they’ll then be part of the fourth biggest economy in the world, with all the advantages that brings. Sure why not bite off a bit of France around Dieppe while they’re at it – you know it makes sense.

    And we all know that southern spain is in fact half british – just look at Gibraltar. It’s a failure of the obdurate spanish to not realise their british heritage. They should release Costa Blanca immediately – you know it makes sense.

    Lord preserve me from the poisonous colonially-minded irish unionists – a shower of pushy self-serving goons if ever there was.

  • Nevin

    Problems created by different types of UK passport arise elsewhere:

    “Persons holding British subject status may apply for a United Kingdom passport. However, the British subject passport is not eligible for the United States Visa Waiver Program. Nor is it eligible for the Australian Electronic Travel Authority or visa-free tourist entry to Canada” .. Wikipedia

  • slug

    If I had children born and brought up in Dublin would they be eligible to be British?

  • Iano

    #

    If I had children born and brought up in Dublin would they be eligible to be British?

    It depends. If you are eligible and register with the British authorities you can claim a British passport. It has –>Nothing<--- to do with the Republic's government despite what whingers on slugger say.

  • Ned

    There is great potential in taking all of this a step further.

    My wife is Irish. My kids are Irish. All three have Irish passports.

    I am stuck with a British passport. Which I hate.

    I think that it would make total, absolute, complete sense if I could get an Irish passport.

    Honest.

  • darth rumsfeld

    …er ned. What’s stopping you then? Try your local post office for the forms.

    harry. you truly contribute a new level of brutish racist trolling to slugger – someone who clearly has an intellect but absolutely no idea how to deploy it is always a sad sight. You use big words to mask small ideas.Try reading some of george or henry94’s posts. They’re worth having a debate with, because they have the wit to..well, use their wits. Of course they’re still always wrong….:0)

  • pia_lugum

    Gregory (tughie ar la) Campbell’s negotiations at St Andrews have got us all learning the Irish language as well as English. What a delightful sweet lot the DUP are! And they are really schrewd, especially Peter Robinson. This means that the Roman Catholics in particular will be forced against their will to keep-up their irish-speaking skills after leaving school – what a rotten bore…

    It follows naturally also that Gregory should back dual citizenship with passports galore! Would they have them at Nutts Corner market?

    It makes an vast improvement from Willy Ross’s watch when unionist MPs concentrated solely on British issues and only spoke the Queen’s english!!!!!!!!!!!!

    PS. My Irish is not great yet but with Gregory’s and St Peter’s help I will be fluent before this next assembly is out….

  • The World’s Gone Mad

    …and then a Dutch Harry on the Dutch Slugger (Slugger Van Tule?) will tell those Dutch whose families have lived in Holland for centuries, with his own particular brand of racism, nationalism, invective and MOPEry, to fuck off back to Belgium or where-ever, and take those Poles who have had the audacity to join the Regiokorpsen with them, before they get what they deserve. Dutch Harry will also despair at the fact that virtually everybody in the Netherlands speaks English. And Dutch Harry, just like his Irish equivalent, will probably not realise, or ignore the fact, that 88% of Gibraltarians want to be British (and the other 12% didn’t vote).

  • DK

    The main problem for the DUP plan to get people to take up british passports is that they are so expensive.

    I recently had to get passports for my kids. The British passport was £45 and the Irish passport was €15. Not being very interested in the border, and given that the products do essentially the same thing, I went for the cheap one.

    If the DUP got the price of the British one down to £5 or less, all my children would become British next time the passports come up for renewal.

  • manichaeism

    I seem to recall that anyone born in Eire prior to 1948 had the right to a British passport.

    The British nationality act came into affect on 1st January 1949. It was this British legislation which changed the right of Eire citizens to British nationality.

  • Harry

    …and then a Dutch Harry on the Dutch Slugger (Slugger Van Tule?) will tell those Dutch whose families have lived in Holland for centuries, with his own particular brand of racism, nationalism, invective and MOPEry, to fuck off back to Belgium or where-ever, and take those Poles who have had the audacity to join the Regiokorpsen with them, before they get what they deserve.

    Funnily enough, I had a visitor from Holland staying with me last weekend who expressed some shock at the thought of Polish policemen being used to police the native population. Such a thing wouldn’t happen in Holland. In particular the idea of going to another country to recruit police officers to come to your country (see here) was something they found shocking – similar to how people in the north were recruited to the Hong Kong police in the 80’s, attracted by the pay and earlier retirement package. In other words, the brits are engaging in colonial policing yet again, this time with the blessing of the shinners and the acquiescence of the clueless.

    “that 88% of Gibraltarians want to be British”

    Jesus, here they go again!

  • Kloot

    >>The British passport was £45 and the Irish passport was €15<< 15 notes for an irish passport... is it really that cheap. I thought it was more expensive... maybe ye are getting a discount up north 🙂

  • George

    Kloot,
    same price for all.

    standard 10 year – 75 euro
    standard 10 year for people aged 65+ – Free

    5-year passport (children aged 3-17 years)- 25 euro
    3-year passport (available to children under 3) – 15 euro

  • DK

    Yes, my little ones are under 3, so it is that cheap. Looks like by the time they are 18 they will revert to British assuming the current exchange rate and pricing remainss (of course, I am also assuming that there is no united Ireland in 16 years time, and that there is still “Britain”).

  • kensei

    “Yes, my little ones are under 3, so it is that cheap. Looks like by the time they are 18 they will revert to British assuming the current exchange rate and pricing remainss (of course, I am also assuming that there is no united Ireland in 16 years time, and that there is still “Britain”).”

    ID Cards not strike you with terror then?

  • DK

    “ID Cards not strike you with terror then?”

    If I have to get both a British AND an Irish one, then yes. Maybe I will be better able to afford them by then, or they can afford to buy their own. Payback for all the nappy changing.

  • Jo

    of course, I am also assuming that there is no united Ireland in 16 years time, and that there is still “Britain”).

    If they are entitled to be British then the government will recognise them as such even if African Basket Case Ireland joins Europe.

  • “Everyone on the island has the right to be British, Irish or both – and more and more are choosing to be both.”

    And I suppose that everyone in East Germany and the Czech Republic can apply to be Russian now does it?

    You can take that ‘right’ and flush it down the toilet. I am proud to be Irish. Just because my grandfather was born on the ‘wrong side of history’ doesn’t mean that I want to take up the nationality of the colonisers.

    “Last Saturday at Croke Park showed the way, a great unifying moment with God Save the Queen, Amhrann na bhFiann and Ireland’s Call reflecting the great diversity of identities here.”

    That’s Amhrán na bhFiann….*sigh* More of that multiculturalism lark. I’m sick to death of it. It’s the new buzz-word or something. And besides two traditions, two cultures, two peoples does not lead to ‘great diversity of identities’.

  • sammaguire

    I’m from Dublin and have absolutely no problem with the UK granting citizen rights to anyone from Donegal, Monaghan, Cavan, Bermuda or anywhere else. That’s a decision for the UK government and nobody else. In saying that I can honestly say that I don’t know anyone down here (Catholic or Protestant) who would be bothered taking out UK citizenship even if the passport was cheaper. Heard of a few people based in England during the Troubles who took out UK citizenship as they were sick of being searched/stripped at UK airports.