British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the unity of the United Kingdom was non-negotiable, responding to the firmness displayed by the French president on post-Brexit arrangements for Northern Ireland.
“We are not negotiating or haggling the integrity of the UK, whether it is territorial, constitutional or the economic integrity of the UK, this is not on the table, this is not negotiable, ”British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab told Sky News on 11 June. He was responding, then, to the firmness displayed by Emmanuel Macron regarding the post-Brexit arrangements for Northern Ireland.
More generally, London accuses the European Union of adopting an “overly purist approach” with regard to the application of new specific customs provisions in Northern Ireland, sources of tension in the British province. These measures were negotiated as part of the Brexit agreement signed in 2019 by the government of Boris Johnson but are causing great tensions in the British province, disrupting trade with the island of Great Britain and angering the unionists loyal to the British crown.
“I think the ball is in the EU’s court, we understand what the French have said and that should prompt the minds at the Commission in Brussels to take a more pragmatic and flexible approach,” Dominic Raab also said.
For Macron, “nothing is renegotiable” on Brexit
Emmanuel Macron warned on June 10 that “nothing is renegotiable” on the issue of Brexit, believing that it was “not serious to want to review in July what was finalized after years of debate and work ”, thus criticizing London’s attitude to the new customs provisions specific to Northern Ireland.
The question was on the menu of the first tête-à-tête on June 10 between US President Joe Biden and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. EU leaders intend to raise this issue on June 12 during a meeting with the British leader on the sidelines of the G7 summit in England.
In an interview with the BBC, the head of the conservative government assured that Joe Biden had not evoked the American discontent about the attempts of London to go back on the “North Irish protocol”.
Whether it’s London, the European Union, Washington, “everyone has a huge interest in ensuring that we keep the essential symmetry of the Good Friday Agreement”, which in 1998 ended three decades of conflict. bloody blood between loyalists, attached to the British crown, and Republicans in favor of the reunification of the island, according to Boris Johnson, who displays an optimistic tone on the resolution of this question: “I think we can do it.”