European Union vows legal response as United Kingdom moves unilaterally on N.Ireland

04 Mars, 2021, 00:59 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • PA Images

A new cross-Channel row erupted Wednesday as Britain threatened to break the terms of the Brexit withdrawal treaty by unilaterally delaying checks on food going to Northern Ireland.

The first of the grace periods had been due to expire at the end of March.

"He underlined that these were needed for operational reasons and were the minimum necessary steps to allow time for constructive discussions in the Joint Committee to continue", she said, adding that Frost said urgent progress was needed and that Britain was acting in good faith to meet its obligations.

The former Brexit negotiator in charge of forging the UK's new relationship with the bloc spoke to Commission vice-president Maros Sefcovic on Wednesday.

Mr Lewis said: 'For supermarkets and their suppliers, as part of the operational plan the UK committed to at the UK-EU Joint Committee on February 24, the current Scheme for Temporary Agri-food Movements to Northern Ireland (STAMNI) will continue until October 1.

He noted that such operational measures were "well precedented" in other worldwide trade arrangements.

"This is the second time that the United Kingdom government is set to breach global law", the statement said.

A request to extend the adjustment period for medicines to be sent from GB to Northern Ireland was also made.

In a statement, the European Union expressed "strong concerns" at a move it said amounted to a violation of the substantive provisions of the Northern Ireland Protocol, the most contentious part of Britain's divorce deal with the EU.

"This is the second time that the UK Government is set to breach global law".

Wage, rent subsidies to remain in place to June 5, feds announce
Trudeau also announced just over half a billion dollars will be invested in research projects and researchers across the country. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced $518-million Wednesday he says will support the work of almost 1,000 researchers.

Chinese investment in Australia plummets amid tensions
The Australian National University's Chinese Investment in Australia Database than $780m (A$1bn; £550m) in speculation. Accordingly, China has forced duties on Australian products like grain, wine, hamburger and lobster.

Neera Tanden withdraws her nomination as budget chief
Tanden needed just 51 votes in an evenly-divided Senate , with Vice President Kamala Harris acting as a tiebreaker. Her past actions have demonstrated exactly the kind of animosity that President Biden has pledged to transcend".

On 3 February, the United Kingdom formally requested that the European Commission extend this grace period, which would waive new checks and required paperwork for agri-foods, along with a number of other sectors, until 1 January 2023.

Sefcovic - who co-chairs with Frost a joint EU-UK committee meant to work through issues related to the Brexit treaty - stressed that the agreement aims to protect the 1998 Good Friday Agreement that brought an end to decades of political violence in Northern Ireland.

The disruption caused widespread confusion among businesses, with some United Kingdom suppliers refusing to ship goods across the Irish Sea.

Speaking today, the UK's Northern Ireland secretary Brandon Lewis said Certification requirements will be introduced in phases alongside the rollout of a digital assistance scheme.

Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis said: 'As part of the pragmatic and proportionate implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol, the Government is taking several temporary operational steps to avoid disruptive cliff edges as engagement with the European Union continues through the Joint Committee.

He said further guidance will be provided later this week on parcel movements from Great Britain to Northern Ireland, to provide necessary additional time for traders beyond April 1.

'These recognise that appropriate time must be provided for businesses to implement new requirements, and support the effective flow of goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland'.

'Guidance will also be set out to help address practical problems on soil attached to the movement of plants, seeds, bulbs, vegetables and agricultural machinery'.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney has said the British government's decision to unilaterally extend grace periods for food imports to Northern Ireland was "deeply unhelpful".



Alek Minassian found criminally responsible for Toronto van attack
Lack of empathy for the suffering of victims, even an incapacity to empathise for whatever reason, does not constitute a defence". The killer was arrested moments later after a failed attempt to commit suicide by cop.

Democrats OK slightly tighter income limits for stimulus checks
Biden, who was in the Senate for more than three decades, is trying to let the process play out to the extent he can. The House will have to vote on any changes the Senate makes. "I think it's noteworthy to know we're in the House".

Donald Trump ‘gutted’ immigration system, says Homeland Security Secretary
When I started 27 days ago, I learned that we did not have the facilities available or equipped to administer the humanitarian laws that our Congress passed years ago, ' Mayorkas continued.

Cuomo Faces Growing Calls From New York Democrats to Resign
Assemblyman Billy Jones of Chateaugay Lake is one of the Democrats who has previously voted to revoke Cuomo's powers. He also denied ever inappropriately touching anyone, a direct contradiction to the latest allegations against him.

National panel advises provinces not to use AstraZeneca vaccine on seniors
As of Saturday, 4.55 million people had received at least one shot of an AstraZeneca , Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine. However, she did urge people to take the shot when they are feeling in good health.

Merck to help produce rival J&J’s COVID-19 vaccine
Psaki announced Tuesday that the federal government would invoke the Defense Production Act to assist Johnson & Johnson and Merck. One would make the vaccine and the other would handle inserting the vaccine into vials and ensuring strict quality controls.

Australian PM says cabinet minister accused of rape 'vigorously' denies allegation
Four inquiries are under way, including a multi-party investigation aimed at ensuring parliament is a safe working environment. Senator Hanson-Young believes the minister must stand aside pending an independent investigation by an eminent former judge.

Aung San Suu Kyi hit with fresh charges after Myanmar's bloodiest day
Several wounded people were hauled away by fellow protesters, leaving bloody smears on pavements, media images showed. The February 1 coup reversed years of slow progress towards democracy after five decades of military rule in Myanmar.

Trump to make first post-White House speech at rightwing summit
Recent polls have given Biden a job approval rating well past 50 per cent, a strong showing from Americans. Trump's remarks marked his first public appearance since he left the White House on January 20.

Prince Philip health: Duke transferred for ‘testing and observation’ - Palace statement
I think that gets to all of us, and then you can only watch the clock so many times and the walls are only so interesting. An ambulance carrying the Duke was seen leaving King Edward VII hospital in London on Monday morning (local time).