March 19, 2020 / 8:59 PM / 16 days ago

Irish, British PMs pledge to align closely on coronavirus -spokesman

DUBLIN, March 19 (Reuters) - The prime ministers of Ireland and Britain agreed in a phone call on Thursday to align in so far as possible the neighbouring countries’ actions to help slow the spread of coronavirus, a spokesman for the Irish government said.

The two leaders also agreed on the importance of close co-operation in the context of the operation of the common travel area between Britain and Ireland, which includes Ireland’s open border with British-run Northern Ireland, the spokesman added.

“The (British) Prime Minister outlined the steps announced yesterday to close the schools. The Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) welcomed this decision which had brought a greater closeness between the position in Ireland and Northern Ireland,” he said in a statement. (Reporting by Padraic Halpin Editing by Chris Reese)

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