Do not tear up the Northern Ireland Protocol, urges Theresa May

Theresa May urged Boris Johnson not to rip up the Northern Ireland Protocol as she called on Boris Johnson to address the Northern Ireland reforms in the Queen’s Speech “sensitively”.

“What is important is that people who did lose loved ones during the Troubles and the majority of those losses will have been at the hands of terrorists… are able to feel that sense of first of all understanding what has happened, and being able to know what has happened, and they will want to be able to feel some sense of closure which they have not been able to see for so many years.”

Noting the lack of reference to triggering Article 16, Mrs May told Mr Johnson: “I do not think that that would be the right move for the Government. I think the Government needs to consider not just some immediate issues, but also the wider sense of what such a sense would say about the United Kingdom and its willingness to abide by treaties that it has signed.

“I put a deal before this House which actually met the requirements of the Good Friday Agreement and actually enabled us not to have a border down the Irish Sea or to have a border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Sadly the DUP and others across This House chose to regret that, but it was such an opportunity for what [they] wanted.”

She also said the Government should “move ahead” on building regulations “to ensure that we embrace now the standards that will be required for our reaching net zero”.

“We are still seeing new homes being built with gas boilers, and those are going to be retrofitted in a few years’ time. And so wouldn’t it make more sense to actually make sure that the regulations ensure that we actually take the moves now for net zero?”


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