EU leaders pressure Boris Johnson on Northern Ireland at G7 meeting


After the British Prime Minister refused to accept a plan to reduce border inspections in the region by aligning with EU food rules, Boris Johnson will face new pressure from European leaders at the G7 summit in Cornwall to resolve Brexit Tensions in post-Northern Ireland.

The administration of US President Joe Biden tried to assure Johnson that agreeing to follow Brussels’ regulations on food and animal inspections would not hinder the prospects for a future Anglo-US trade deal. But Downing Street insisted that this idea would not work.

Biden and Johnson discuss Northern Ireland trade rules Their first face-to-face meeting The Thursday before the three-day G7 summit that started on Friday.

The British leader told the BBC that Biden was not shocked by his position on this issue at the Thursday meeting.

But Johnson’s meeting with European leaders at the summit may not have been so diplomatic. He will meet with the President of the European Council Charles Michel and the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Lein on the sidelines of the summit on Saturday.

Johnson will also hold bilateral meetings with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. He met with Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi on Friday.

Macron, seen as a tougher line of leadership in London Question of Northern Ireland, Before the G7 meeting, warned that the restart of the Brexit agreement was “not serious.”

The French President said at a press conference on Thursday: “I think it’s not serious to want to review what we have finalized in July after years of debate and work in December.” “This is not between Britain and France. The problem is between Europeans and Britain.”

British aides said that although US National Security Adviser Jack Sullivan said that Biden had “deep” concerns about the state of the peace process in Northern Ireland, this issue did not dominate the president’s meeting with Johnson.

On the contrary, the British Prime Minister said that the British-US relationship is not only “special” but also “indestructible”, describing Biden’s appearance on the world stage four years after Donald Trump’s presidency as “a breath of fresh air.”

The United States has been encouraging Johnson and the European Union to reach a compromise on how to best implement the Northern Ireland agreement-this is part of Johnson’s Brexit agreement involving border issues in the region.

US President Joe Biden and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson during their bilateral meeting on Thursday © Bloomberg

The agreement leaves an open border on the island of Ireland — the Republic of Ireland is part of the European Union — but checks certain products from the UK to Northern Ireland to prevent them from eventually entering the EU single market.

Committee Vice Chairman Maros Sefcovic again this week urged the United Kingdom to agree to the “Swiss” model, that is, the United Kingdom will align with Brussels food and agricultural inspections in order to significantly reduce the need for border inspections on Irish Sea ports.

The United States has been urging Britain to accept this proposal. Yael Lempert, the most senior US diplomat in the UK, suggested this month to David Frost, the Brexit secretary, that such an agreement would be supported by Washington.

According to the British “Times” report, she said that Biden will ensure that “will not negatively affect the chances of reaching a US-UK free trade agreement.” Downing Street did not deny the existence of the bill, but US officials insisted that the exchange on June 3 did not “strengthen” the tone.

The United Kingdom argues that it needs to be flexible in formulating its own rules-especially in the sensitive agricultural sector-to ensure trade agreements with countries with different standards (especially the United States).

But Johnson’s allies said Britain would never accept that it would be bound by the Brussels rules. “This is a matter of principle,” one person said. “We won’t go that way.”

British officials insisted that, given the power of the U.S. agricultural lobby in the U.S. Congress, if the U.K. applies EU agricultural rules, it will complicate the trade agreement with the U.S.

But in any case, Biden showed little enthusiasm for reaching an early trade agreement with Britain. “Almost no discussion,” said an official with knowledge of the president’s talks with Johnson. “This is not a priority for him.”

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