Boris Johnson committed to finding ‘practical solutions’ to Northern Ireland Protocol as EU and UK officials meet today



British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said the UK is committed to finding practical solutions to the problems of the Northern Ireland Protocol in order to protect the Good Friday Agreement. 

r Johnson reportedly made his comments in a phone call with European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen last night.

The UK government and senior figures from the European Commission are meeting today in London to review the Northern Ireland Protocol. 

One meeting will discuss the implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement, in particular in the Northern Ireland Protocol. 

It will be the eighth meeting discussing the protocol, and a failure to come to an agreement, which could see Britain taking more unilateral actions to disapply the protocol and the EU moving ahead with legal actions and trade sanctions. 

US President Joe Biden has repeatedly raised concerns about Brexit’s impact on Northern Ireland.

As part of his first overseas trip as US president, Mr Biden will touch down in Britain tomorrow ahead of of a G7 Summit with an emphasis on coronavirus vaccines.

The Democrat and his wife Jill are expected to land on Air Force One at RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk today to kick off an eight-day trip to Europe.

Mr Biden will meet US personnel stationed at the base, and is expected to be greeted himself by a far calmer reception than his predecessor Donald Trump, who was met by a wave of protest.

The president will share face-to-face talks with Boris Johnson on Thursday in Cornwall, where the summit begins the following day.

Having succeeded Mr Trump after his single fractious term in them White House, Mr Biden said the trip is about “realising America’s renewed commitment to our allies and partners” in an article for the Washington Post.

Mr Biden also said he would meet with the Prime Minister to “affirm the special relationship between our nations”.

However, this week it emerged Mr Johnson is not a fan of the expression after an American magazine reported he told aides he does not like the seemingly “needy and weak” term.

Downing Street said he “prefers not to use the phrase” and is instead intent on fostering a “close relationship” with Washington.

Part of that, Mr Johnson hopes, is a trade deal with the States.

Mr Biden will join others from the G7 group of leading economies in Carbis Bay on Friday, where there is the prospect of protest.

The Prime Minister plans to use the summit to urge the members – also including Canada, Japan, France, Germany and Italy – to “defeat” Covid-19 by helping to vaccinate the world by the end of next year.

After the summit ends, the president and the first lady will meet the Queen at Windsor Castle.

Mr Biden will then depart for Brussels and later Geneva in Switzerland.

With reporting from PA



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