Boris Johnson's proposals will "undermine the Good Friday Agreement", says Jeremy Corbyn 9 months ago

Boris Johnson's proposals will "undermine the Good Friday Agreement", says Jeremy Corbyn

"What's worse is particularly the section on Northern Ireland, which is very unspecific on how the Good Friday Agreement can be upheld within the terms of the letter."

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has proposed a "new protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland" to replace the backstop, which was included in Theresa May's original Withdrawal Agreement.

In his proposals, Johnson described the backstop as a "bridge to nowhere" and insisted that it be taken from any agreement.

He said Theresa May's deal had been rejected by parliament three times and that his proposal would remove the backstop from the agreement.

The Prime Minister stated that Northern Ireland will leave the EU’s Customs Union, but said customs checks do not need to take place “at, or even near, that border”.

The proposals suggest regulatory checks between Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and custom checks on goods going between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

The full text of the Johnson's letter to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker can be read here.

Speaking to the BBC about the proposals, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said they are worse than Theresa May's deal and would undermine the Good Friday Agreement.

"It's worse than Theresa May's deal and I can't see it getting the support that he thinks it will get and it will take us into a regime in Britain of deregulation, of undercutting and I think will also undermine the Good Friday Agreement," he said.

"What's worse is particularly the section on Northern Ireland, which is very unspecific on how the Good Friday Agreement can be upheld within the terms of the letter."

In a statement by the European Commission on Wednesday following President Jean-Claude Juncker's phone call with Johnson, the commission acknowledged the positive steps but said a lot of barriers remain.

"President Juncker welcomed Prime Minister Johnson's determination to advance the talks ahead of the October European Council and make progress towards a deal," the statement read.

"He acknowledged the positive advances, notably with regards to the full regulatory alignment for all goods and the control of goods entering Northern Ireland from Great Britain.

"However, the President also noted that there are still some problematic points that will need further work in the coming days, notably with regards to the governance of the backstop. The delicate balance struck by the Good Friday Agreement must be preserved."