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Fix it or ditch it, UK’s Johnson warns EU on N.Ireland deal

BELFAST, Oct 1 (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Boris Johnson stated on Friday that Northern Ireland’s contentious post-Brexit buying and selling preparations may work in precept in the event that they have been “fixed” however warned the EU they might be “ditched” if not.

The Northern Ireland protocol was a part of the Brexit divorce settlement Johnson negotiated with the European Union. But London has stated it have to be rewritten lower than a 12 months after it got here into operation because of the limitations companies are dealing with importing items from Britain.

“We hope that we can fix this thing. This is not a problem that we wanted, I have got to stress that. I can’t emphasize that more,” Johnson advised BBC Northern Ireland.

“The protocol could in principle work… It has got enough leeway in the language for it to be applied in a common sense way without creating too many checks down the Irish Sea.”

But he warned it would come all the way down to “fixing it or ditching it”.

“What I am saying to you is I want to see a real negotiation. I want to see the EU come to the table with some serious proposals to fix it.”

Brussels are attributable to reply in full shortly to a “command paper” put ahead by London in July calling for basic modifications to the protocol. The European Commission has rejected a complete renegotiation. learn extra

The July proposals additionally as soon as once more raised the prospect of triggering “Article 16” of the settlement, which permits both facet to unilaterally search to dispense with a few of the phrases if they’re proving unexpectedly dangerous.

Neither facet can scrap the protocol by way of these safeguard measures.

Asked if he would set off Article 16 as quickly as subsequent week, Johnson stated it relied on what the EU brings ahead and “whether they are willing to negotiate seriously about removing the obstructions that we have currently got.”

Reporting by Amanda Ferguson in Belfast, writing by Padraic Halpin and James Davey

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson addresses the 76th Session of the U.N. General Assembly in New York City, U.S., September 22, 2021.  REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz/Pool/File Photo