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EU chief rejects Johnson’s plea to renegotiate Northern Ireland protocol

European Union chief Ursula von der Leyen has rejected Boris Johnson’s plea to renegotiate the post-Brexit deal on Northern Ireland after a telephone name with the prime minister.

The European Commission president mentioned on Thursday that Brussels will “be creative and flexible” over the Northern Ireland protocol “but we will not renegotiate”.

Her dismissal got here regardless of Mr Johnson arguing there are “huge opportunity to find reasonable, practical solutions to the difficulties” being skilled in Northern Ireland.

Their name was in response to Brexit minister David Frost demanding that important adjustments are made to the phrases of the deal he negotiated as he mentioned “we cannot go on as we are”.

But the Tory peer held again from instantly suspending components of the deal, regardless of claiming the UK can be justified to take the dramatic step.

Ms von der Leyen mentioned Mr Johnson “called to present” the proposals to unravel the post-Brexit commerce points between Northern Ireland and Great Britain on Thursday morning.

“The EU will continue to be creative and flexible within the Protocol framework. But we will not renegotiate,” she tweeted.

“We must jointly ensure stability and predictability in Northern Ireland.”

Downing Street mentioned that Mr Johnson “set out that the way the protocol was currently operating was unsustainable” throughout the name.

“Solutions could not be found through the existing mechanisms of the protocol,” a No 10 assertion mentioned.

“That was why we had set out proposals for important adjustments to it.

“He urged the EU to take a look at these proposals critically and work with the UK on them.

“There is a huge opportunity to find reasonable, practical solutions to the difficulties facing people and businesses in Northern Ireland, and thereby to put the relationship between the UK and the EU on a better footing.”

Earlier within the day, UK enterprise secretary Kwasi Kwarteng mentioned the protocol, which successfully retains Northern Ireland within the EU’s single marketplace for items, was by no means “something that was going to last forever”.

“A deal is a deal but it wasn’t something that was going to last forever,” he informed Sky News.

“Nobody thought the Northern Ireland Protocol was going to outline the function of Northern Ireland throughout the UK forevermore, it was one thing that was versatile.

“You’ll bear in mind two years in the past folks mentioned we have been by no means going to get a deal from the EU however we did so.

“When people say they’re not going to look at the protocol again, I say ‘well, let’s just see’.”

‘Gaps on shelves’

The protocol was put in place to make sure there can be no onerous border with Ireland, however it has as a substitute successfully positioned a commerce barrier within the Irish Sea.

However, Lord Frost mentioned the financial and social harm attributable to the preparations would have justified using Article 16, successfully tearing up components of the deal.

The difficulties attributable to the preparations have meant Northern Ireland had confronted reductions in grocery store product strains.

Marks & Spencer’s chairman warned there shall be some “gaps on shelves” in Northern Ireland this Christmas.

One thought put ahead can be for UK merchants to declare whether or not the ultimate vacation spot for his or her items was Northern Ireland or the Republic.

Lord Frost’s proposals are thought to require adjustments to at the very least three of the protocol’s articles.

He known as for a “standstill” interval, preserving the present grace intervals and suspending authorized motion taken by the EU towards the UK whereas adjustments are negotiated. – PA


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