NI protocol override clause is common in legislation says minister
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Conor Burns Northern Ireland Minister talked with Journalist Andrew Marr about the Government’s latest announcement on the Northern Ireland agreement. The announcement that the UK government plans on scrapping the EU Brexit deal, has caused some political outrage today. Mr Burns discussed the Government finding a solution that protects the ambition of the European Union. He then went on to discuss protecting the institutions of the Good Friday agreement.
Mr Marr said: “Let me ask you about what I suspect is a more contentious aspect of this still, which is the so-called clause 15.
“Which allows ministers to override any other aspect of the protocol whenever they like if they think there are social political reasons to do so.”
Mr Burns told LBC: “Well that is a thing that is often done in a… To give Ministers scope to deal with unforeseen things, but we are essentially saying here, there’s got to be a way to find a solution that protects the legitimate ambition of the EU, to protect their single markets for goods.
“Moving through Northern Ireland, into the Republic of Ireland into the EU single markets, and also uphold the integrity of the UK’s internal single market.
“But also critically protects the institutions of the Good Friday agreement, will get power sharing back up and running in Northern Ireland.
“Get’s a Government that is in Northern Ireland functioning and delivering for the people of Northern Ireland.”
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Mr Marr added: “Can I ask you whether this is really going to happen, you’ve got protests or problems inside your own party in the House of Commons from both wings of the party, actually.
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Prime Minister Boris Johnson is pushing ahead with the ripping of the bill.
“Working people must not pay the price for this reckless move.
“The Government must drop this bill, honour the agreement they signed up to and put practical solutions ahead of posturing.
“Ministers need to get back around the table with the EU as soon as possible and come to an agreement that protects jobs, rights and the Good Friday Agreement.”
There have been many questions raised political over the bill, and MPs have been pushing for the disagreement to be resolved fairly as soon as possible.
The Government announced today that they were introducing a bill to fix the Northern Ireland protocol.
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has commented on the Government the bill.
Ms Truss said: “This Bill will uphold the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement and support political stability in Northern Ireland. It will end the untenable situation where people in Northern Ireland are treated differently to the rest of the United Kingdom, protect the supremacy of our courts and our territorial integrity.
“This is a reasonable, practical solution to the problems facing Northern Ireland. It will safeguard the EU Single Market and ensure there is no hard border on the island of Ireland. We are ready to deliver this through talks with the EU. But we can only make progress through negotiations if the EU are willing to change the Protocol itself – at the moment they aren’t. In the meantime, the serious situation in Northern Ireland means we cannot afford to allow the situation to drift.”
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