Boris Johnson downplayed differences between the UK and the US over the effect of Brexit on peace in Northern Ireland, and said the two countries and the EU were in “complete harmony” with the peace deal. of 1998.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has hailed U.S. President Joe Biden as “a great breath of fresh air” and minimized the differences on the effect of Brexit on the peace agreement in Northern Ireland, after they met on the eve of the G7 summit.
Both were smiles as they posed for the media before 90 minutes of closed-door discussions, overshadowed by claims that Biden had ordered a reprimand in London amid his dispute with the European Union over new trade agreements in Northern Ireland. .
After talks in Cornwall, England, Johnson said the United States, the United Kingdom and the EU were in “complete harmony” in finding solutions to maintain the 1998 peace agreement that ended decades of sectarian conflict in the British province.
“There is total harmony in the need to move forward, find solutions and make sure we abide by the Belfast Good Friday Agreement,” Johnson said.
– Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) June 10, 2021
After Brexit, a new agreement was needed for the border between Northern Ireland, which is part of the UK, and Ireland, because the EU requires inspection of certain products and others that are not allowed at all.
Before the June 30 deadline, continued negotiations on goods, including sausages, have been controversial and have attracted the attention of the White House.
U.S. officials have said the United States has no plans to participate in the negotiations and that Biden would not give lectures to Johnson, but would urge a resolution to be reached quickly.
“I think the interesting thing is that Northern Ireland is a fantastic place and has incredible potential. It’s a big part of the UK, “said Johnson.
Asked if Biden had made his alarm about the situation in Northern Ireland very clear, Johnson said: “No, he didn’t.”
Johnson said Biden wanted to work with London on a wide range of issues ranging from climate change and COVID to security.
“It’s a great breath of fresh air,” Johnson said of the conversations with Biden. “It’s new, it’s interesting and we’re working very hard together. We continued for about an hour and 20 or so. It was a long, long and good session. We’ve covered a wide range of topics. “
Biden was also positive about the meeting with Johnson and said the couple discussed a wide range of issues.
“We affirmed the special relationship between our people,” Biden said.
The US president said the alliance is addressing challenges that include cybersecurity, new technologies, global health and the climate crisis.
A White House statement released shortly after the meeting between the two leaders said that “the United Kingdom and the United States reaffirm their commitment to work closely with all parties” to protect the [Good Friday] Agreement and “realize their vision of reconciliation, consent, equality, respect for rights and parity of esteem.”
The President of the United States strongly opposed Brexit, the UK’s exit from the EU that Johnson defended, and has expressed great concern about the future of Northern Ireland.
Atlantic Charter, new working group
Biden said the two leaders too updated the Atlantic Charter eighty years ago, which led to the United Nations and NATO.
The new poses the challenge posed by countries such as China and Russia with their promises to promote free trade, human rights and a rules-based international order and counter “those who try to undermine our alliances and institutions.”
The new letter also aimed at “interference through misinformation” in elections and murky economic practices, charges the West has filed in Moscow and Beijing.
Biden and Johnson also agreed on a new joint working group to examine how to resume travel between the UK and the US, following successful coronavirus vaccination campaigns in both countries.
They also pledged to work on “expanding trade and progressing towards a future free trade agreement between the United Kingdom and the United States,” according to Downing Street.
Biden has warned that any setback by the UK in its post-Brexit commitments to the EU in relation to Northern Ireland could jeopardize US trade negotiations.