UK PM Johnson tells EU: ditch the backstop or there will be no-deal Brexit

MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned the European Union on Saturday that the “anti-democratic” Irish backstop must be dropped if they were to strike a Brexit divorce deal.

Johnson, because taking office on Wednesday, has actually consistently stated that if the EU continues to refuse to renegotiate the Withdrawal Contract agreed by his predecessor Theresa May, then he will take Britain out on Oct. 31 without an offer.

His most significant demand is that the most hotly-contested element of the Brexit divorce agreement, the Irish border backstop, be struck out of the Withdrawal Arrangement, a demand that has angered Ireland and annoyed other EU capitals.

” If we eliminate the backstop, entire and whole, then we are making a great deal of development,” Johnson said, when asked if it was only the Irish border backstop that he desired altered.

Speaking before a Stephenson’s Rocket, a 19 th century steam engine, in the northern England city of Manchester, Johnson committed the majority of his speech to enhancing civil services, transportation and the web and driving up financial growth.

” Our post-industrial towns have a proud, excellent heritage however an even greater future. Their best years lie ahead of them,” he said, announcing new long-lasting rail links and appealing immediate enhancements to bus services.

That message, aimed at what Johnson called “left” towns, is viewed as the early phases of an election project, even though Britain is not due a parliamentary election till 2022 and Johnson is adamant he will not hold one prior to Brexit.

His Conservative Party does not have a bulk in parliament, is divided over how to deliver Brexit and under risk of a no-confidence vote when parliament returns in September.


European leaders are prepared to talk with Britain’s new leader over Brexit however have up until now insisted they will not resume the Withdrawal Contract. Lots of EU diplomats believe the UK will hold a breeze election quickly.

Johnson, who went over Brexit with U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday, brushed aside those issues.

” My buddies, I do not want a no-deal Brexit, that is not where we’re aiming, but we need to face the fact that at the minute we’re being informed, as we have actually been informed for the last 3 year ‘rien ne va plus’ – ‘the offer is fixed’ – and can’t be changed. I question that,” he stated.

Nevertheless, investors fear a no-deal exit would send out shock waves through international markets and injure the world’s economy.

Ireland is crucial to any Brexit option.

The backstop is an insurance policy created to avoid the return of border controls along the 500- km (300- mile) land border in between Ireland and Britain’s province of Northern Ireland that were ended by the 1998 Excellent Friday peace contract.

Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said the concern of the marriage of Ireland and Northern Ireland would inevitably occur if Britain leaves the EU without a divorce deal on Oct.31

” The technique of the UK government is not going to be disengaged or aloof or waiting for them to come to us: we are going to attempt to fix this issue and we are going to do it in a spirit of friendship and cooperation,” Johnson said.

” However we can’t do it as long as that anti-democratic backstop, that backstop that looks for to divide our nation, divide the UK, remains in location,” he said. “We require to get it out and after that we can make progress, I believe.”

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson responds as he satisfies engineering graduates on the website of an under-construction tramline in Stretford, near Manchester, Britain July 27,2019 Ben Stansall/Pool through REUTERS

The Withdrawal Contract that May struck in November with the EU states the UK will remain in a customs union “unless and until” alternative plans are discovered to avoid a hard border.

Lots of British legislators oppose the possibility of being bound to EU rules and customizeds duties that would avoid Britain doing its own trade deals and leave it managed by EU judges.

Reporting by William James, Editing by Guy Faulconbridge abd Janet Lawrence

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