Leo Eric Varadkar, Taoiseach, Minister for Defence and Leader of Fine Gael since June 2017, has reportedly called suggestions of an extension of the transition period instead of a legally binding backstop as “strange”.
Key quotes (source: The Irish Times)
An extension of the transition period would be a concession to the United Kingdom because it would be asking for it, asking for more time to prepare to put Brexit into real effect.
It would be asking for more time to negotiate a new relationship. It would be asking for more time to get that new relationship treaty ratified. This would be a concession to the UK.
We certainly would not be exchanging anything in return for it. I thought that was a somewhat unusual trade-off to propose.