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Boris Johnson proposes to the EU a commitment not to impose barriers on the Irish border

August 19, 2019

LONDON, Aug 19 (EUROPE PRESS) –

The British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, on Monday sent a letter to the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, in which he proposes to replace the emergency plan or 'backstop' with a formal commitment and with guarantees of not introducing physical barriers in the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

“The government will not build infrastructure or controls in the frotnera between Northern Ireland and Ireland. We would love to accept a legally binding commitment in this regard and we hope that the EU is also ready,” Johnson said in the letter, published by the British Government.

Johnson believes that the emergency plan is “simply unfeasible” because it is “undemocratic and incompatible with the sovereignty of the United Kingdom as a State.”

“The United Kingdom and the EU have already agreed that an 'alternative pact' may be part of the solution. Therefore, I propose that the 'backstop' be replaced by a commitment to implement these pacts before the end of the transition period in the as much as possible, “explains the letter.

Thus, he expresses his willingness to face a new negotiation in a “constructive and flexible” way to achieve those pacts that provide confidence about what will happen if a definitive agreement is not reached at the end of the transition period.

“There is little time, but the United Kingdom is willing to move quickly and, given the degree of agreement already reached, I hope that the EU is also willing to do the same,” he said.

In addition, Johnson has contacted US President Donald Trump and Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar at the beginning of a week of clear diplomatic offensive with planned meetings also with French President Emmanuel Macron and the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel

In his dialogue with Trump, which Downing Street has also reported, Johnson has addressed “economic issues and our business relationship” and “the prime minister has updated the president on Brexit.”

With Varadkar, he has agreed to meet in Dublin at the beginning of September, as London and Dublin have reported after a nearly one-hour telephone conversation that, however, has not served to move their previous positions.

Johnson has reminded Varadkar that the Withdrawal Agreement agreed by his predecessor, Theresa May, cannot be approved in Parliament and that the only alternative is to renegotiate. Varadkar, on the other hand, has adhered to the position of the EU, which refuses to reopen what has already been agreed and has requested legal guarantees to avoid a hard border.

Johnson has said that the Common Travel Zone that allows citizens of the two countries to move freely across borders will remain in force after Brexit.