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Boris Johnson needs to break international law after ‘not reading’ withdrawal agreement

3 min read

Brexit: Boris 'never properly read' WAB claims barrister

During the latest episode of Brexit Unlocked, Jon Holbrook questioned how Boris Johnson and the UK Government could sign up to the terms outlined in the withdrawal agreement. He added that the Prime Minister should argue that the withdrawal agreement goes against the integrity of Britain in a bid to get out of the coercive law the EU will not shy away from using.

Mr Holbrook said: “It seems to me that Boris and everyone else who cheered that withdrawal agreement never properly read it.

“They only seem to have now discovered that that withdrawal agreement will enable the EU to partially partition the United Kingdom down the Irish Sea.

“I mean what sensible government could possibly sign the country up to that.

“Though that is the difficulty that he’s never realised we’re in so he’s now proposing to pass national legislation that will enable us to breach our international obligations.

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“I do not have a problem with that, it seems to me international law is very different from national law.

“It is not binding in the same way, it largely works on the basis of consent.”

He continued: “But the problem is there are enforcement mechanisms under the withdrawal agreement and the EU have said they won’t shy away from using them.

“Ultimately, if you do battle with a coercive law and this law under the withdrawal agreement will be coercive, then you tend to come off badly.

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“If the government was serious about it and explained to the people why it was necessary to do this, in other words, it goes to the very essence and integrity of our nation, then it seems to me there would be scope for us doing it and getting away with it.

“But one of the many problems with Boris is that he won’t ever have that argument with us.

“He won’t ever tell it like it is and he won’t mobilise the people because if he tried it, I’m sure he would have some success.”

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On Saturday, Boris Johnson and Ursula von der Leyen issued a joint statement revealing they had agreed to undertake further negotiations on a post-Brexit trade deal.

The statement stated: “Significant differences remain on three critical issues: level playing field, governance and fisheries.

“Both sides underlined that no agreement is feasible if these issues are not resolved.

“Whilst recognising the seriousness of these differences, we agreed that a further effort should be undertaken by our negotiating teams to assess whether they can be resolved.”

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