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Christmas is coming soon: EU, UK back to Brexit

It was late Christmas last year when the European Union and the United Kingdom finally came together Bridget. Trade agreement after years of quarrels, threats and deadlines to seal their divorce.

It was hoped that the now-separated Britain and the 27-nation bloc would lead their relations to calm waters.

Don’t even think about it.

Diplomatic breakups and bitter divorces have caused such bile and bad blood that two months after another Christmas, the insult of betrayal and duplicity is flying again.

“It was written in the stars from the beginning,” said Hendrik Voss, a professor at the University of Ghent. “There were a lot of loose ends. There were a lot of problems that always caused problems, like fishing and trade. Northern Ireland

It was an economic moment but symbolically the subject of the fish that made the trade deal until the last minute. And fishing is now providing an edge.

This week France Gathering its EU partners for a common position and action if London were to move small French fishing boats closer to the British Crown of Jersey and Guernsey embracing the Normandy coast of France. Don’t license.

In the French parliament last week, Prime Minister Jean Costaque accused Britain of violating its fishing promise.

“We clearly see that the UK does not respect its signature,” he said, adding that “we just want the word to be respected.”

In a relationship where both sides often feel inferior about each other, Caustic was referring to the centuries-old French insult “Perfidius Albion”, which can never be trusted.

Its Minister of Europe. Clement Beyonc. Added late Monday. The European Union has carefully implemented the agreement reached with the United Kingdom. We expect the same from the UK. ”

Across the English Channel, Brexit supporters in British politics and media often portray the European Union, are deeply hurt by the decision to leave the UK, and try their best to reduce Briggs by removing bureaucratic hurdles.

The sect has emerged in the escalating battle against Northern Ireland, the only part of Britain that shares a land border with an EU country. Under the most delicate and controversial part of the Brexit deal, Northern Ireland remains the only market in the EU to trade goods, in order to avoid a tight border with EU member Ireland.

This means that some goods bound for Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK must be subject to customs and border checks, despite the fact that they are part of the same country.

The rules aim to prevent goods from entering the EU from entering the EU’s tariff-free single market, while keeping an open border on the island of Ireland – a key pillar of the Northern Ireland peace process.

The British government soon complained that arrangements were not working. He said laws and regulations put a heavy red tape on businesses. No less than a war metaphor, 2021 has already brought a “sausage war”, with the UK asking the European Union to lift its ban on processed British meat products such as sausage entering Northern Ireland.

Meanwhile, the British Unionist community in Northern Ireland says the Bridget Treaty undermines the peace process by weakening relations with the rest of Northern Ireland.

The UK has accused the EU of being unnecessarily “pure” in enforcing the treaty, known as the Northern Ireland Protocol, and says it needs major changes to make it work. Is.

The bloc has agreed to look into the changes, and is due to make suggestions on Wednesday. Prior to the move, the UK stepped up its call, calling for more sweeping changes to the joint negotiating agreement.

In a speech in the Portuguese capital, Lisbon, on Tuesday, Britain’s Brigadier General David Frost said the European Union would have to remove the European Court of Justice as the final arbiter of trade disputes in Northern Ireland.

This is a demand with which the European Union is unlikely to agree. The block’s highest court is seen as the apex of the free trade single market. Brussels He has vowed not to weaken his rule.

“No one should have any doubts about the gravity of the situation,” Frost said in Lisbon, urging the European Union to “show determination and readiness at the heart of the head of the protocol to address the fundamental issues.”

Frost intends to say that if no solution is found soon, the UK will apply for a clause that would allow both parties to suspend the agreement in exceptional circumstances.

This would send the already tested relationship into a deep cold and could lead to a trade war between the UK and the bloc – which would hurt the UK economy more than its larger neighbor.

Some EU observers say Britain’s demand for the removal of the court’s oversight shows that it is not serious about implementing the Bridging Treaty.

Irish Foreign Minister Simon Cowney accused Britain of “changing the playing field” and rejecting EU proposals without considering them.

“It is being seen again and again as the same pattern throughout the EU – the EU tries to solve the problem, the UK rejects it before the solution is published and asks for more,” Cowney said. ۔ ”


Jill Lawless reports from London.


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