Liz Truss discusses UK’s ‘cast-iron commitment’ to Belfast Agreement with US delegation

The UK overseas secretary stated she mentioned the UK’s “cast-iron commitment” to the Belfast Agreement throughout a gathering with US politicians on Saturday.

Liz Truss stated it was “great” welcoming a bipartisan US congressional delegation led by high Democratic congressman Richard Neal, with matters of dialog starting from the peace treaty to “the importance of free trade” and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The go to by the US delegation to Britain comes amid tensions over post-Brexit preparations for Northern Ireland.

Mr Neal, the top of the highly effective methods and means committee within the US House of Representatives, additionally spoke with UK worldwide commerce secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan and British Labour chief Keir Starmer on Saturday.

Accounts of the talks with the British cupboard ministers to this point have been skinny on element.

The talks adopted a warning from US House speaker Nancy Pelosi that the US Congress wouldn’t help a free commerce settlement with the UK if the UK authorities continued with “deeply concerning” plans to “unilaterally discard” the Northern Ireland protocol, part of the EU-UK Brexit withdrawal settlement that ensures a particular post-Brexit buying and selling standing for the North to keep away from a tough Border in Ireland. The protocol has turn into the supply of political tensions for some unionists, and between the EU and the UK amid excellent points over its implementation.

Ms Trevelyan stated she was “delighted” to welcome the bipartisan congressional delegation led by Mr Neal to her division to debate UK-US commerce issues, in addition to the scenario in Ukraine, however made no specific point out of post-Brexit tensions.

A spokesman for Mr Starmer stated his assembly with the delegation featured talks on the necessity to shield the Belfast Agreement by making certain a working Northern Ireland protocol.

The Labour chief and congressional delegation additionally touched on the should be bold and artistic in commerce dialogues between the US and UK, and the significance of western unity within the face of Russian aggression in Europe, the spokesman stated.

Strongly worded intervention

In a strongly worded intervention on Thursday, Ms Pelosi urged the UK and the EU to proceed negotiations on the post-Brexit commerce preparations to uphold peace in Northern Ireland.

The congresswoman stated in an announcement: “The Good Friday Accords [Belfast Agreement] are the bedrock of peace in Northern Ireland and a beacon of hope for the whole world.

“Ensuring there stays no bodily Border between the Irish Republic and Northern Ireland is completely obligatory for upholding this landmark settlement, which has remodeled Northern Ireland.

“It is deeply concerning that the United Kingdom now seeks to unilaterally discard the Northern Ireland protocol, which preserves the important progress and stability forged by the accords.”

The newest controversy on the difficulty has been sparked by Ms Truss’s announcement on Tuesday that the UK intends to legislate to override components of the Brexit withdrawal treaty it struck with the EU referring to the protocol.

The overseas secretary instructed the House of Commons the transfer was wanted to cut back “unnecessary bureaucracy” and to guard the Belfast Agreement.

The ongoing row over the treaty has created an deadlock in efforts to type a devolved authorities administration in Belfast, with the DUP refusing to hitch an govt except its issues over the protocol are addressed.

DUP chief Jeffrey Donaldson described Ms Pelosi’s contribution as “entirely unhelpful”.

Washington issues

Ms Pelosi will not be the one senior determine in Washington to specific concern about relations between the UK and the EU in latest days.

Derek Chollet, a senior adviser to US secretary of state Antony Blinken, stated on Friday a “big fight” between the UK and the EU was the “last thing” the US wished.

Mr Neal instructed the Guardian a part of his job was to persuade the UK to not breach the Brexit treaty.

“They haven’t breached it yet. They’re talking about breaching it, so part of my job is to convince them not to breach it,” he stated.

“My function is manifold however we actually need to reaffirm America’s unwavering dedication to the Good Friday Agreement and to remind everyone that on the eve of the twenty fifth anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement, it has labored splendidly.

“I want to remind everybody in the UK, in Northern Ireland that it should not be treated as a cavalier achievement.” – PA

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