Lough Foyle (Irish: Loch Feabhail) is the estuary of the River Foyle (Irish: an Feabhal) that lies between County Derry (Irish: Contae Dhoire) which is currently located in the part of north east Ireland that remains under British colonial rule and County Donegal (Irish: Contae Dhún na nGalland) in the Republic of Ireland. Since the partition of Ireland in 1922 ownership of Lough Foyle, has been claimed by both Ireland and the UK.
Now following a claim by British Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire that the whole of the lough is owned by the UK, Ireland's Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan has stated that Ireland has never accepted the UK's claim to the whole of Lough Foyle. The Irish government response came after Irish political party Sinn Féin described James Brokenshire's claim as arrogant and provocative and called on the Irish Government to challenge it.
Currently the area is regulated by a cross-border body set up under the Good Friday Agreement. The Good Friday Agreement (Irish: Comhaontú Aoine an Chéasta) was agreed in Belfast on Good Friday, 10 April 1998 and was part of the Northern Ireland peace process. It came into effect on 2 December 1999. The British claim of ownership of Lough Foyle is typical of continuing British colonial attitudes in the north east of Ireland.
In response to the claim Ireland's Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan went on to say that following discussions in 2011 between the then Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs and the British Foreign Secretary, both governments agreed to seek to address and resolve jurisdictional issues relating to both Lough Foyle and Carlingford Lough. Ireland's Department of Foreign Affairs said efforts are continuing to resolve the dispute between Ireland and Britain over ownership of Lough Foyle.