Belfast Telegraph

'That simply doesn’t work for the UK' - Boris Johnson rules out Northern Ireland-only backstop

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (Toby Melville/PA)
Prime Minister Boris Johnson (Toby Melville/PA)

By Hugh O'Connell

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has ruled out a Northern Ireland-only backstop being part of a deal to break the Brexit impasse.

Mr Johnson was responding to reports that he is considering plans for a regulatory border in the Irish Sea in a bid to salvage a Brexit deal ahead of the October 31 deadline.

He was reported in The Daily Telegraph on Tuesday to be examining plans for an all-Ireland zone for checks on most goods crossing between north and south of the island.

There has also been speculation that Mr Johnson's government could propose a backstop that would only apply to Northern Ireland, with the possibility of a role for the Stormont Assembly before it could be triggered or new EU rules would take effect.

Mr Johnson referred specifically to such media speculation during a Facebook Live Q&A with the public.

He insisted: "The crucial thing to understand is we will not accept either a Northern Ireland-only backstop, that simply doesn’t work for the UK.

"We’ve got to come out whole and entire and solve the problems of the Northern Ireland border and I am absolutely certain that we can do that."

Following a meeting with the Prime Minister on Tuesday, DUP leader Arlene Foster said they were "exploring ideas" and it was important to get a "sensible deal".

Irish Independent

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