Mary Lou McDonald was commenting after a party leadership delegation also including Leas Uachtarán Michelle O’Neill, MP Elisha McCallion and Chief Negotiator Conor Murphy, met Boris Johnson at Stormont today.
She said: “We told him that to make progress here, he needs to ensure he is not the DUP’s gopher. He needs to stop mollycoddling them and he needs to put pressure on his unionist colleagues so that we can land on a deal that is equitable and fair.
“With political will, agreement can be reached on the outstanding rights issues so the ongoing indulgence of the DUP and rejectionist unionism has to stop.”
Mary Lou McDonald also insisted the Irish people will not be bullied by the British government over Brexit.
She added: “We told Boris Johnson that the Irish people will not be bullied by his bluster.
“We told him that he needs to respect the wishes of the majority here who voted to remain within the EU and who support the Backstop as the minimum protections required.
“We reminded him of his obligations under the Good Friday and subsequent agreements including the requirement to act with rigorous impartiality and the provision for a unity referendum.
“So if Boris Johnson is indeed willing to see a hard border reimposed on our island, then he must also provide for a unity referendum as laid out in the Good Friday Agreement.
“That is the route back to the EU for the people in the North – unionist nationalist and neither – who voted against Brexit in the first place.”