An increasing number of Unionists are now applying for Irish passports due to Brexit scaremongering, according to one DUP MP.
East Antrim MP and Brexiteer Sammy Wilson, who was giving evidence to the Hours of Lords EU committee in Belfast, said he signs two or three applications for Irish passports every week, some of them on behalf of DUP voters, RTE reports.
When asked whether the rise in Irish passport applications north of the border following the Brexit referendum had taken him by surprise, he said no.
"You know something, as an MP that every week, and you know I represent a strongly unionist constituency, and I probably sign two or three Irish passport applications a week.
"People who vote for me, who call themselves loyalists, do this because they think 'aye Sammy, you never know once we leave the EU I don't want to have to apply for a visa to go on my holiday to Spain'. So that's the kind of thing that has provoked that.
"They may well regret, mind you, in a couple of years' time when they find they have spent all this money on an Irish passport that they didn't need to do, but anyway they have got the opportunity and they have taken it."
He added: “There has been so much misinformation about – (like) when we leave the EU you are going to require a visa to get into other European countries and everything else," he told the peers.
"People being canny will safeguard, if they have got the opportunity to do it they'll safeguard themselves.
"Personally I haven't applied for an Irish passport because a) I don't believe all the scare stories and b) I am British and I wish to have my British identity registered by the passport I am carrying," he said.