Brexit has ‘deepened divisions’ in Scotland and Northern Ireland

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Brexit has already caused “substantial damage” to the UK’s system of devolution, with Westminster accused of having “largely ignored” both Scotland and Northern Ireland, according to a report.

A new research paper has examined the impact of Brexit on the two nations of the UK which voted to remain in the European Union in the 2016 referendum.

Brexit has already caused "substantial damage" to the UK's system of devolution, a new report claims.

Brexit has already caused "substantial damage" to the UK's system of devolution, a new report claims.

Dr Kirsty Hughes and Dr Katy Hayward said the Brexit process had “deepened political divisions” in both Scotland and Northern Ireland.

They warned these tensions could be “further exacerbated” if Britain fails to reach a deal with the other European nations over its departure.

The paper highlighted a “striking similarity” between Scotland and Northern Ireland, saying that in both nations “political parties’ stances on Brexit have deepened existing divisions”.

In Northern Ireland, Sinn Fein supports unification and opposes Brexit while the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) supports the Union with the UK and Brexit.

Meanwhile in Scotland, the Conservative and Labour parties - albeit not all Labour politicans - support Brexit and staying in the UK while the SNP opposes Brexit and seeks independence.

“Overall, Brexit has already done substantial damage to the UK’s political system as far as devolution is concerned,” the two experts said in a blog published alongside the research paper.