Brexit news – live: EU “unimpressed” by Liz Truss threat to trigger Article 16

EU unimpressed by Liz Truss’ post-Brexit threats to Northern Ireland

The European Union is “not too impressed” by Liz Truss’ threat to trigger Article 16 of the Northern Ireland Protocol if talks fail.

EU Ambassador to the UK Joao Vale de Almeida responded to the Foreign Secretary’s comments saying: “We have heard this from the government before, so we are not surprised. We are not too impressed.

“We still think that it is not very useful to continue to agitate the question of article 16.”

He said the EU wanted to “reconnect” with the British government.

Article 16 would allow the EU or the UK to take unilateral “safeguard” action if they believe the deal causes serious practical problems or leads to trade diversion.

The measures are authorized if the operation causes “economic, societal or environmental difficulties”.

Write in the Sunday Telegraph, Liz Truss said: “My priority is to protect peace and stability in Northern Ireland. I want a negotiated solution, but if we are to use legitimate provisions, including Article 16, I am ready to do so.


Up to a quarter of teachers plan to take time off work due to Omicron, education secretary says

Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi said preparations were underway for up to a quarter of teachers to take time off work in the coming weeks with Covid.

Some schools are already reporting staff shortages of up to 40 percent, he said.

Read more about what Zahawi said here:

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 2:43 PM


Priti Patel plans to impose legal security requirement on venues after Manchester Arena bombing

The sites would have a legal obligation to ensure security within the framework of the new plans drawn up by the Minister of the Interior Priti Patel.

The proposals follow the Manchester Arena bombing that left 22 people dead and are due for release on Monday.

Figen Murray, mother of victim Martyn Hett, 29, campaigned for the introduction of a Martyn law that would require sites and local authorities to put in place action plans in the event of terrorist attacks.

Priti Patel said the new legislation would not place an “undue burden on small businesses”. She said: “Following the tragic attack on Manchester Arena, we have worked closely with Figen Murray, victim groups and partners to develop proposals to improve protective security across the country.

“I am grateful for their tireless commitment and those who responded to the consultation, the majority of whom agreed that tougher measures are needed to protect the public from harm.

“We will never allow terrorists to restrict our freedoms and our way of life, which is why we are committed to bringing forward legislation this year that strikes the right balance between public safety, without placing an undue burden on small businesses.”

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 2:09 PM


DUP welcomes Truss’ comments ahead of meeting with EU

DUP chief Sir Jeffrey Donaldson expressed support for Liz Truss’ article in the Sunday Telegraph in which it sets out its intention to negotiate Brexit between the UK and the EU and threatens to trigger Article 1 of the Northern Ireland Protocol if necessary.

Sir Donaldson retweeted the article with the comments: “A welcome statement of intent from Liz Truss ahead of next week’s talks. She is right to say that trade unionists do not agree to the protocol and we need the government to follow through on its commitment to safeguard the Union and protect Northern Ireland’s place in the UK internal market.

He then shared a tweet with a quote from the article, where Liz Truss said: “But let me be clear, I will not sign anything that would prevent the people of Northern Ireland from benefiting from the same decisions on matters. tax and spending, like the rest of the UK, or still see good movements within our country being scrutinized ”.

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 1:39 PM


Johnson reportedly escaped further investigation into apartment renovation standards – Telegraph

A new investigation will not be opened into the renovation of Boris Johnson’s apartment in Downing Street, The Sunday Telegraph reported.

Number Ten was reportedly told last week that Kathryn Stone, the parliamentary standards commissioner, would not open a new investigation into the redecoration.

The announced decision comes after two separate inquiries by the Election Commission and Lord Geidt into how the project was funded.

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 1:05 PM


Nadhim Zahawi: People should listen to Rafael Nadal not Djokovic

Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi called tennis star Rafael Nadal a “hero” of the “Djokovic saga” and called on people to get vaccinated.

He said: “I would encourage everyone to get their jab, because it will protect them, their families and their community.”

Listen to his comments here:

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 12:45 PM


Mayor of Bristol: ‘symbolic act’ of overturning statues should not replace ‘real change’

Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees said the acquittals of four protesters who toppled the statue of Edward Colston were “less important” to the city than to the defendants.

“In the lives of the four people, it’s incredibly important because their future has faced a crossroads in some ways,” he said. Trevor Philips Sunday.

“For the racial inequality work in Bristol much more broadly, it is less important because when we tackle racial inequality, we look at the underlying drivers of political and economic inequalities.

“The verdict itself does not really touch on these very real and immediate issues.”

Mr Rees said “symbolic acts”, such as the overthrow of Colston, should not replace “genuine, substantial systemic change”.

He said: “Symbolic acts, while important, if they start to replace acts of political and economic policy and the real substance becomes a problem.

“If we look around in five years, we realize that nothing has really changed, people point out all these things that have happened and we say, ‘Oh, these are just deeds, these are not. only performance ”.

“We have to be very careful how we deal with these issues. “

The Press Association contributed to this report.

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 12:31


Dangerous coating: Gove to announce crackdown on developers

Housing Secretary Michael Gove is set to announce action against developers who have built unsafe homes with flammable siding, it has been reported.

In a statement to the Commons on Monday, Gove is expected to say that “those who knowingly put lives in danger should be held accountable for their crimes.”

“And those who seek to profit from the crisis by making it worse should be prevented from doing so.”

His comments were reported in Sunday Times and include a warning to developers that “we’re coming for you”.

Gove will also say, “I put them on notice. If you’ve mis-sold dangerous products like siding or insulation, if you’ve saved money while building or renovating homes, we’ve come for you.

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 12:15 PM


Exceptional tax on North Sea companies “does not make a difference”, says Nadhim Zahawi

Education Minister Nadhim Zahawi said Labor’s new plan for a windfall tax on North Sea oil and gas companies “does not hold water” because the companies “are already in trouble”.

He said the policy proposals were not going to “cut him”. He argued that the Conservatives’ increase in the national living wage will help people cope with rising energy costs.

Listen to Zahawi quized on LBC news:

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 11:41 AM


The sooner the EU and UK get past Brexit, the better equipped they will be to deal with the Russian threat – EU Ambassador to UK

EU Ambassador to UK Joao Vale de Almeida said the sooner the EU and UK overcome Brexit issues “the better equipped we will be” to solve “very serious problems” .

Referring to the construction of Russian troops on the Ukrainian border and Russia’s military support in Kazakhstan, he said: “This is an area where the EU and the UK can do a lot together.”

‘My feeling looking at the big picture is that the sooner we get to the issues that are still openly linked to Brexit, in particular the situation in Northern Ireland, the sooner we get out of it, the better equipped we will be, the EU and in the UK, to work together to solve very serious problems.

The Press Association contributed to this report.

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 11:13


What is Article 16 of the Northern Ireland Protocol?

Article 16 is part of the Northern Ireland Protocol, a Brexit deal reached between the UK and the EU in October 2019.

The protocol leaves Northern Ireland in the EU’s single market for goods, meaning that items can move freely between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

However, this sets Northern Ireland apart from the rest of the UK and creates an effective ‘maritime boundary’ between the two.

Article 16 is in fact a safeguard clause which would allow the EU or the UK to take unilateral “safeguard” action if they conclude that the agreement causes serious practical problems or results in trade diversion. .

These measures are authorized if the operation causes “economic, societal or environmental difficulties”.

Article 16 is not designed to abandon the deal entirely and, once the safeguard measures are implemented, negotiations on the deal would continue.

The measures would be jointly reviewed every three months so that updated measures can be taken.

However, disagreements could escalate if no resolution to the “difficulties” is found.

Holly BancroftJanuary 9, 2022 10:52 AM

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Edward L. Robinett