The Republic of Ireland will take over control of the US and Mexico’s border after being asked to do so by Mexico in a “historic agreement” signed on Thursday.
Under the deal, the Republic will have complete jurisdiction over the border for the first time in more than two decades and will also be able to establish new ports and airports on the Mexican side of the border, including one on the northern city of Ciudad Juarez.
The deal also means that if there is an emergency or border crisis, the border can be controlled by Mexico’s army.
But Mexico has long complained that Ireland’s jurisdiction over its southern border has been under-used, with the government saying it has been hampered by a lack of border police, customs and customs clearance processes.
It has also argued that the country is not doing enough to control its smuggling of drugs across the border.
Irish Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan told the AP news agency the agreement will mean that if an emergency arises, the Irish government will be able “to take over”.
“This is a historic moment,” he said.
“This will be a milestone for our relationship with Mexico and for the Irish people.”
Mr Flanagan said the deal is a “major milestone” in relations between the two countries.
“It’s a huge win for both countries, it’s a historic agreement and it’s one that I think will create an even better relationship and better economic cooperation between our two countries.”
The agreement was reached in the face of fierce criticism from Mexico and its ally, the United States, and condemnation from Mexico’s ambassador to the United Nations, Jorge Guzman.
In a statement, Mr Guzman called the agreement a “fantasy”.
“The deal is an excuse to increase the pressure on the United State and the US government to negotiate with us,” he added.
“If they have not done anything, they should have done something.”
Mexico has called the deal a “coup d’etat” and said it would not allow its border to be used for “political or illegal purposes”.
“We will not allow the US to continue to control our border, or to use it for anything other than humanitarian purposes,” Foreign Minister Claudia Ruiz said.
But the agreement is expected to have far-reaching implications for the US relationship with Latin America, as it will give the United Kingdom full control of its southern frontier.
Mexico has been keen to secure the border with the United United States for decades but has repeatedly complained about the lack of control over its border and its role in smuggling drugs.
The border is one of the world’s busiest, with tens of thousands of drugs crossing daily into the US.
The Mexican government has said it is prepared to accept some border controls under the agreement, but only if the US can guarantee a level playing field on the drug trade.
“There is a very high level of trust between us and the United Americans.
We cannot let that fall apart,” Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said at a news conference on Thursday, referring to the deal with the US by his initials.