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World Nothing to sea here: Boris Johnson takes a swim ahead of G7 summit talks

14:21  12 june  2021
14:21  12 june  2021 Source:   msn.com

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a girl riding a wave on a surfboard in the water: TOPSHOT-BRITAIN-G7-SUMMIT © AFP via Getty Images TOPSHOT-BRITAIN-G7-SUMMIT

Boris Johnson took a dip in the sea on Saturday ahead of crunch talks with EU leaders.

The European Union has been urged to back down in a dispute with the UK over Northern Ireland’s post-Brexit trading arrangements.

The Prime Minister is meeting European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen, European Council head Charles Michel, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the margins of the gathering in Cornwall today.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab urged the EU to take a more “pragmatic” approach to the Northern Ireland issue.

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a group of people sitting at a beach:  (AP) © Provided by Evening Standard (AP)

The main summit agenda will see the leaders of the UK, the US, Canada, Japan, France, Germany and Italy commit to a new plan aimed at preventing a repeat of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mr Johnson also faces a potentially tricky series of meetings with the EU’s senior representatives.

Downing Street has indicated the UK would be prepared to unilaterally delay the full implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol to prevent a ban on chilled meats crossing the Irish Sea from Great Britain.

Restrictions on British-produced chilled meats entering Northern Ireland are due to come into force at the end of the month.

Delaying the checks without Brussels’ agreement risks triggering a “sausage war” trade dispute, with the EU threatening to respond to any breach of the deal signed by the Prime Minister.

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Mr Johnson has suggested the EU is taking an “excessively burdensome” approach to post-Brexit trading arrangements for Northern Ireland.

Mr Raab told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme: “They can be more pragmatic about the implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol in a way that is win-win or they can be bloody-minded and purist about it, in which case I am afraid we will not allow the integrity of the UK to be threatened.”

During the meeting in Cornwall, Mr Macron reportedly told the Prime Minister the UK-France relationship could only be “reset” if Mr Johnson stood by the Brexit deal, according to French sources.

Ms Von der Leyen has said both sides must implement what they agreed on.

The protocol effectively keeps Northern Ireland in the European single market to avoid a hard border with Ireland, meaning a trade barrier in the Irish Sea for goods crossing from Great Britain.

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The Prime Minister’s official spokesman told reporters in Cornwall the immediate priority was to find “radical and urgent solutions within the protocol”.

But “we keep all options on the table”, he added, indicating the possibility of a unilateral extension of a grace period to allow sausages to continue to be shipped across the Irish Sea.

Downing Street played down expectations of Mr Johnson finding a resolution to the impasse at the Carbis Bay summit.

The spokesman suggested the meeting was “not the forum in which he is necessarily seeking to come up with an immediate solution”.

At a press conference ahead of the G7 summit, Mrs von der Leyen insisted the protocol is the “only solution” to prevent a hard border with the Republic and must be implemented in full.

Mr Macron also warned the Brexit deal cannot be renegotiated.

The main business of the summit will see the leaders discuss building resilience to future crises, consider foreign policy and then decide on their response to Covid-19.

Leaders from the G7 will commit to a new plan – the Carbis Bay Declaration – to quash future pandemics within the first 100 days.

The UK will also create a new animal vaccine centre aimed at preventing future diseases crossing from creatures to humans.

As part of Mr Johnson’s “Global Britain” agenda the leaders of South Korea, India, Australia and South Africa will also take part in summit events, expanding the G7 to take in other prominent democracies.

At the end of the day, the leaders attending the event – India’s Narendra Modi will participate remotely because of the coronavirus crisis in his country – will relax with a barbecue on the beach cooked by Simon Stallard, chef at the Hidden Hut in Portscatho.

They will be served sirloin and lobster and can then enjoy hot buttered rum and toasted marshmallows around fire pits on the beach.

Sea shanty group Du Hag Owr will provide the musical accompaniment, and there will also be a Red Arrows flypast.

Morrison squibs his Packer-Bond moment with Boris .
The Australia-UK trade agreement is economically irrelevant but interesting in terms of which national leader came out the political winner.The numbers being bandied around about the benefits are rounding errors for both economies — 0.02% of GDP for the UK and 0.06% for Australia, though at least the UK media immediately placed the numbers under scrutiny rather than parroting them like Australian journalists did.

usr: 0
This is interesting!