President Joe Biden appears to have pushed the UK to abandon Brexit in his first phone call with newly appointed UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
In his first phone call with the country’s new Prime Minister, US President Joe Biden appears to have pushed the UK to bow to the European Union on the key Brexit issue of Northern Ireland.
Biden’s White House had previously put significant pressure on now-former Prime Minister Liz Truss on the issue, threatening to derail any prospect of a UK-US trade deal. If Westminster does not agree to give Brussels legal authority over the disputed territory, there will be no trade deal.
The President is said to have discussed Northern Ireland with Prime Minister Sunak, according to a press release published on the White House’s official website, with both leaders discussing “their shared commitment to protecting the gains of the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement.”
The two leaders did, however, agree in the White House statement that there was a “need to maintain momentum toward reaching a negotiated agreement with the European Union on the Northern Ireland Protocol,” an agreement that currently allows the EU significant say in the operations of the six-county region while also separating it from Britain’s internal market through the establishment of trade barriers.
According to the White House statement, Joe Biden will continue to press the UK government on Brexit, hoping to persuade Westminster to bow to Brussels over Northern Ireland protocol disputes.