Northern Ireland: London and Brussels promise to resolve tensions


LONDON (Reuters) – Britain and the European Union on Thursday reaffirmed their commitment to resolving post-Brexit trade frictions on the Northern Ireland border.

In a joint statement issued on Thursday, British Foreign Secretary Michael Cove and European Commission Vice President Maros Shefkovic said they had “open and constructive discussions”.

Without giving details, they added that they would “make no attempt” to implement the measures approved in December on the Northern Ireland Code.

Britain’s exit from the EU in January caused major trade disruptions between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK, worsening relations between London and Brussels. Since the UK left the EU earlier this year, trade between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK has become a point of constant tension between the two sides.

Following the EU’s announcement of the inclusion of Northern Ireland in the vaccine export control mechanism, relations between the two camps, which have already been embroiled in years of intense Brexit talks, are further complicated by the fact that a physical border between Ireland, a member of the European Union and the British province of Northern Ireland can be established.

(Conor Humphries and John Stroopzewski; French edition by Camille Renat)

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