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Boris Johnson makes rainforest joke as he meets Amazon founder Jeff Bezos
Joe Biden is “wrong” to be concerned about the UK and the EU’s disagreement over post-Brexit trade in Northern Ireland, a cabinet minister has said.
Environment secretary George Eustice claimed on Wednesday that the US president does not “fully appreciate” how “complicated” the situation is, as trade disruption between Great Britain and Northern Ireland continues.
This comes after Mr Biden said on Tuesday that the argument between the UK and the bloc should not threaten peace in Ireland, something the US played in a large role in achieving.
The US president did not contradict Barack Obama’s assertion that the UK would be at the “back of the queue” for a post-Brexit deal, saying instead that he would discuss trade “a little bit” with his British counterpart.
Ahead of the meeting, Mr Johnson had acknowledged that a post-Brexit free trade agreement between the countries was not a “priority” for the Biden administration.
Biden ‘wrong’ over NI Brexit dispute, says minister
Joe Biden is “wrong” to be worried about Britain and the EU’s disagreement over Northern Ireland’s Brexit trade deal, a minister has said.
The UK government has blames trade friction between Great Britain and Northern Ireland on the protocol it signed with the EU.
Referring to President Biden, environment secretary George Eustice told Sky News: “He is probably at the moment just reading the headlines, reading what the EU is saying, reading what Ireland might be saying, which is that they would like the Northern Ireland Protocol to work in the way the EU envisage.
Mr Eustice added that the issue was “very complicated”, suggesting Mr Biden does not “fully appreciate all of that”.
UK must not threaten peace in Ireland, says Biden
Joe Biden might not have been forthcoming about a potential UK trade deal, but he was more assertive about Brexit.
Speaking on Tuesday, the US president said the US had made a “major bipartisan effort” to establish peace in Ireland.
“And I would not at all like to see, nor I might add would many of my Republican colleagues like to see, a change in the Irish accords, the end result having a closed border in Ireland,” he said.
His comments come as the British government considers whether to overrule aspects of its Brexit agreement with the EU, amid trade disruption between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Truss to push Iran to free Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe after almost 2,000 days of imprisonment
Foreign secretary Liz Truss will push Iran to free Nazinin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and other British detainees at a meeting in New York.
The latest push for a diplomatic solution comes a day ahead of Nazinin’s 2000th day of imprisonment.
To mark the day, her husband Richard Ratcliffe will stand outside Parliament on Thursday on top of a giant snakes and ladders board.
He said his family remains “caught in a game between governments”, adding that there have been five foreign secretaries since she was detained.
“We live the ups and downs of our lives, as they roll their dice, and make their diplomatic moves,” he said.
Our political editor Andrew Woodcock has more details:
First face-to-face meeting with Tehran’s foreign minister since 2018
UK will not put ‘timescales’ on US trade agreement, says Eustice
The UK will not put “timescales” on reaching a free trade agreement with the US, a cabinet minister has said.
Speaking to Sky News, environment secretary George Eustice admitted a deal was not a “a priority” for the White House.
“We still very much hope to be able to put together an agreement with the United States,” he said.
“We are not putting timescales on it.”
World should ‘grow up’ and tackle climate change, says PM
The Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow must a “turning point for humanity”, Boris Johnson will tell world leaders on Wednesday.
Addressing the UN General Assembly, the British prime minister will say that the world needs “to grow up” to the scale of the climate crisis”.
“The world – this precious blue sphere with its eggshell crust and wisp of an atmosphere – is not some indestructible toy, some bouncy plastic romper room against which we can hurl ourselves to our heart’s content.
“Daily, weekly, we are doing such irreversible damage that long before a million years are up we will have made this beautiful planet effectively uninhabitable – not just for us but for many other species.”
Glasgow summit must be ‘turning point for humanity’, PM tells United Nations
Biden dashes hopes of a quick UK-US trade deal
Joe Biden has not committed to a post-Brexit free trade agreement with the UK, dashing British ministers hopes for a quick deal.
Instead, he said he would discuss trade “a little bit” with Boris Johnson at a meeting on Tuesday and that the issue would have to be “worked through”.
Mr Johnson had earlier admitted that a deal was not a priority for the US, as the Biden administration had “a lot of fish to fry”.
President’s warning to Boris Johnson not to allow Brexit to result in closed border in Ireland
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