The number of people applying for Irish passports has spiked following the Brexit vote, and now calls are being made for a passport office in Northern Ireland.

The Irish Passport Office announced that a record-breaking 700,000 Irish passports have been issued so far this year, the Derry Journal reports.

Derry Sinn Fein Councillor, Colly Kelly, said the calls for a passport office north of the border is justified.

He said: “An office in the North would greater enfranchise people across Ireland and help to ease the burden on staff.

“In June of this year I called on the Irish foreign affairs Minister, Charlie Flanagan, to open a Passport Office in Derry.

“The British Government’s intention to drag the North out of the European Union leaves the island of Ireland facing potentially the most destabilizing period since partition.

“Following the EU Referendum result the demand for Irish Passports in the North has only increased.

“The increase in the number of Irish Passport applications also reiterates that the Irish Government has a duty to represent best interests of all Irish citizens in the upcoming Brexit negotiations.”

Following the UK’s vote to leave the EU, passport applications from England, Wales and Scotland increased by 42 percent more than last year, while applications from people in the north increased 27 percent.