The British minister, fervent about Brexiter, apologizes to Ireland

The British minister for Northern Ireland apologized on Monday (October 3) for the damage caused by the Brexit negotiations to diplomatic relations between Britain and Ireland.

Steve Baker, a staunch supporter of Brexit, said he regretted that “Relations between the UK and Ireland have been hampered by the Brexit process“, during an interview with the Irish public medium RTE.

SEE ALSO – Charles III commits to work for peace in Northern Ireland

“Huge anxiety”

The minister, who took office almost a month ago with the arrival of Liz Truss in Downing Street, also admitted his tough stance during talks on Britain’s divorce from the EU had “caused enormous anxiety“.”Some of our actions have not been very respectful of the legitimate interests of IrelandSteve Baker said in this mea culpa.

If I have to be a little humble to restore broken relationships, to achieve that, I’m happy to be humble.He added. The Minister has already made similar comments at the Conservative Party’s annual conference which started in Birmingham on Sunday.

Steve Baker explained that he felt “the ice to thaw a littleduring a meeting with Irish leaders at events organized following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8. The government of Liz Truss, who succeeded Boris Johnson in early September, sought to set a new tone by tackling the thorny issue of post-Brexit trade rules in Northern Ireland, with both Dublin and Brussels.

As Foreign Secretary in the Johnson government, Mrs Truss had promised to rewrite the Northern Ireland protocol the British government signed with the EU, which had brought relations to an all-time low.

“Royal Engagement”

New British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly and European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic promised in an exchange on Friday to relaunch negotiations on the protocol, which have been stalled since February.

On Sunday, Irish Prime Minister Michael Martin told RTE there was a “true commitmentto solve this protocol problem. The Northern Ireland protocol, negotiated at the time of Brexit, creates a de facto customs border between the island of Great Britain and the British province, complicating supplies and angering unionists attached to UK membership.

For several months, the unionists have refused to form a local executive, supposedly shared with the now Republican majority of Sinn Fein, if the text is not challenged. Steve Baker, who said his apology had not gone down well with Unionists, urged them to “defuse these tensions“.

SEE ALSO – Northern Ireland: London intends to modify the post-Brexit agreement “in the coming weeks”

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