Liz Truss 'willing' to override Northern Ireland-part of Brexit deal
By SEAMLESS DAILY
09 January 2022
ms truss says that when she meets mr sefcovic, the eu's lead negotiator, she will be "putting forward our constructive proposals to resolve the situation".
next week ms truss is due to meet northern ireland's political and business leaders.
"But let me be clear, I will not sign up to anything which sees the people of Northern Ireland unable to benefit from the same decisions on taxation and spending as the rest of the UK, or which still sees goods moving within our own country being subject to checks," she said.
Goods which are due to move onwards to the Republic of Ireland would be checked at Northern Ireland's ports.
That would involve all of the UK following the relevant EU rules, something the government says it could not accept.
I want a negotiated solution but if we have to use legitimate provisions including Article 16, I am willing to do that."
"This safeguard clause was explicitly designed- and agreed to by all sides- to ease acute problems because of the sensitivity of the issues at play."
Foreign secretary Liz Truss has warned she is prepared to unilaterally override parts of the post-Brexit agreement on Northern Ireland if negotiations fail.
Ms Truss said she will suggest "constructive proposals" to her EU counterpart Maros Sefcovic this week during their first face-to-face talks.
But she said she is "willing" to trigger Article 16 of the Northern Ireland protocol, which would suspend parts of the treaty designed to prevent a hard border with the Republic, if a deal can not be struck.
the foreign secretary was handed responsibility for the negotiations after lord frost resigned as brexit minister last month.
truss is hosting šefčovič, a european commission vice-president, at the chevening country retreat when he visits on thursday.
Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, she said it was her "absolute priority" to resolve the “ unintended consequences ” created by the protocol to maintain peace in Northern Ireland.
the current issues are "myriad and manifest", she argued, citing issues such as bureaucracy on sending parcels between northern ireland and britain and problems procuring kosher food.
"I am prepared to work night and day to negotiate a solution," Truss continued.
Last week, Mr Sefcovic warned that "the foundation of the entire deal" brokered between the UK and the EU would be jeopardised if Ms Truss takes the drastic step.
"This is a very distracting element in the discussions.
You try to achieve something together and – bam – there's the threat of Article 16 again," he told German newspaper Der Spiegel.
"It touches on the fundamentals of our relationship.
The Northern Ireland protocol was the most complicated part of the Brexit negotiations, and it is the foundation of the entire deal.
Without the protocol, the whole system will collapse.
We must prevent that at any cost."
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