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Irish PM says focused on achieving a 'decent' EU-UK free-trade deal

FILE PHOTO: Ireland's Prime Minister Micheal Martin leaves a meeting at the EU summit, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Brussels, Belgium early July 21, 2020. REUTERS/Johanna Geron

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland is focused on achieving a “decent free-trade deal” between Britain and the European Union, Prime Minister Micheal Martin said on Sunday, adding that he did not believe the British government wanted the “ruinous” consequences of failure.

“No deal would be ruinous for Britain, it would be extremely damaging to the British economy and British jobs,” Martin told RTE television in an interview. “They do care in the end.”

Martin described British actions in recent days as “a ploy” and said British Prime Minister Boris Johnson “knows well” that the European Union is not trying to break up the United Kingdom.

Reporting by Conor Humphries; Editing by Susan Fenton

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