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Sunday 3 December 2023 Dublin: 4°C
Brian O'Leary via
Border poll

Majority of people in the Republic want Irish unity referendum within five years

That’s according to the latest Amárach/Claire Byrne Live poll for

THE MAJORITY OF people in the Republic of Ireland would like to see an Irish unity referendum in the next five years. 

That’s according to the latest Amárach/Claire Byrne Live poll for which found that 51% people would like to see the referendum take place in the next five years. 

The poll found that 29% of people would not like to see the referendum take place in the next five years, while 20% of people were unsure. 

If a border poll was to take place, the people of Northern Ireland would be asked whether they want to remain part of the United Kingdom or create a united Ireland.

Depending on the result, the Republic would then vote on the matter.

Under the Good Friday Agreement, the Northern Ireland Secretary of State can initiate a border poll in circumstances where it is clear public opinion had swung towards Irish unity.

Looking at a regional breakdown of the poll, Munster was the area with the most amount of people in favour of a referendum over the next five years, at 62%. 

In Leinster (excluding Dublin), 55% of people were in favour of the referendum, while 47% in Connaught/Ulster and 40% in Dublin were in favour. 

In the age range 18-24, a total of 70% of people wished to see the referendum take place, while just 9% were against the idea. 

The least amount of people were in favour of the referendum in the 45-54 and 55+ age range categories, both at 43%.

Speaking last month, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said he would like to see a united Ireland in his lifetime. 

When asked if he would like to see a united Ireland, he said: “I would, but only in accordance with the Good Friday Agreement, so that’s only with the consent of the majority of people in Northern Ireland.” 

He said “that’s really important stuff and nobody should be forced into anything they don’t want”. 

“And also, I think, if we ever get to that point, we need to make sure that unionists in Northern Ireland and British people in Northern Ireland feel that a united Ireland is a warm place for them,” Varadkar said. 

“We don’t want to have a repeat of what happened 100 years ago when a minority was left behind.”

The Claire Byrne Live / Amarách Research Panel consists of over 1,000 Irish adults, all aged 18+. The poll was conducted earlier this week.

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