Thursday, 29 Jul 2021

Brexit LIVE: Frost readies new battle plan to rip up ‘contradictory’ deal with EU

Brexit: 'Trouble' in Northern Ireland 'pleasing' EU says expert

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Britain’s Brexit chief, who was in charge of the team that negotiated the agreements with the European Commission, warned yesterday that the Northern Ireland Protocol part was a “matter for debate”. Now he is preparing to announce the Government’s new proposals for the Protocol tomorrow by releasing a new policy paper and giving a statement to Parliament. Ahead of the announcement, Lord Frost told a session of the European Scrutiny Committee: “One of the difficulties with the Protocol is that it’s quite a purposive document, and a lot of its provisions have to be read with other provisions to sort of work out precisely what they mean.

“For example, the contradiction between the provision saying the union customs code must apply, and the provision that says that you must do your best to reduce checks at Northern Ireland ports: quite what the correct interpretation of those two things is is obviously a matter for debate.

“So I think the issue is that certainly arguably, the way the EU is allowing us to run some of these arrangements is arguably not consistent or only partly consistent with that sort of balance.”

It comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson threatened to rip up the Brexit deal unless the EU agrees to move the goalposts on its red tape in Northern Ireland.

A UK Government spokesman told “We will set out our approach to the Protocol to Parliament later this week.

“Solutions must be found to address the issues which are causing significant disruption on the ground in Northern Ireland.

“All options remain on the table if these cannot be reached.

“The Government’s priority will always be the protection of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement and the peace process.”


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