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Biden to press UK PM Johnson over Northern Ireland

u.s. president biden speaks to news media at the white house in washington
US President Joe Biden

U.S. President Joe Biden will warn British Prime Minister Boris Johnson not to renege on the Northern Ireland Brexit deal when they meet for the first time at the G7 summit this week, The Times reported on Monday, citing unidentified sources.

Preserving the delicate peace in Northern Ireland without allowing the United Kingdom a back door into the EU’s markets through the 310-mile (500 km) UK-Irish land border was one of the most difficult issues of the Brexit divorce talks.

The riddle was resolved, in part, by the Northern Ireland Protocol of the Brexit deal. But, unionists in the province say it contravenes the 1998 peace deal and Britain has said the Protocol is unsustainable in its current form.

Biden, who is proud of his Irish heritage, will use a meeting with Johnson on Thursday to explicitly express U.S. support for the Protocol. He will also warn that the prospects of a U.S. trade deal with the United Kingdom will be damaged if the situation remains unresolved, The Times said.

Biden will also make it clear to the European Union that he expects it to stop being “bureaucratic” and adopt a more flexible approach to the implementation of the agreement, The paper said.

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