Coveney “hugely disappointed” by UK Government approach to NI Protocol
"This is not the way to find sustainable solutions to the genuine concerns of people."
Simon Coveney has responded to the UK Government's decision to continue to pursue a bill that will significantly change the Northern Ireland Protocol.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs spoke about the Bill which is set to hit the House of Commons on Monday (27 June).
"I am hugely disappointed that the British government is continuing to pursue its unlawful unilateral approach on the Protocol on Northern Ireland," Coveney said.
"This is not the way to fund sustainable solutions to the genuine concerns of people and business in NI and only adds to uncertainty.
"I continue to urge the British government to return to constructive dialogue with the EU in pursuit of jointly agreed, long-lasting solutions."
Johnson defended the decision to put the bill forward while speaking at the G7 Summit in Bavaria this morning.
“What we’re trying to do is fix something that I think is very important to our country, which is the balance of the Good Friday agreement (GFA)," the British Prime Minister said.
“You’ve got one tradition, one community which feels that things really aren’t working in a way which they like or understand.
"You’ve got barriers, unnecessary barriers to trade from Great Britain to Northern Ireland.
"All we are saying is that you can get rid of those without in any way endangering the EU single market.”
Johnson said that the new bill could be in action by the end of the year.
Coveney continued to blast the bill on his personal Twitter account, where he said that the bill would "damage the GFA, not protect it."
NI Protocol Bill:
It will damage the GFA, not protect it.
It’s a breach of Int. Law & will damage the UKs reputation.
It’s against business & majority opinion in NI.
It’s unnecessary UK unilateral action when partnership & compromise is on offer from #EU.
This Bill is no fix.
— Simon Coveney (@simoncoveney) June 27, 2022
"It's a breach of Int. Law and will damage the UK's reputation," Coveney continued.
"It's against business and majority opinion in NI.
"It's unnecessary UK unilateral action when partnership and compromise is on offer from EU.
"This Bill is no fix."
If the bill passes through the House of Commons, it will then have to approved by the House of Lords before it can be implemented as law.