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Boris Johnson has broken trust with the Irish Government, says Taoiseach Micheál Martin

Irish Mirror logoIrish Mirror 09/09/2020 Ferghal Blaney & Ciara Phelan
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during the weekly question-time debate in Parliament in London, Britain, September 9, 2020, in this screen grab taken from video. Reuters TV via REUTERS © Thomson Reuters Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during the weekly question-time debate in Parliament in London, Britain, September 9, 2020, in this screen grab taken from video. Reuters TV via REUTERS

Boris Johnson has broken trust with the Irish Government, the Taoiseach has said.

Micheál Martin insisted he would have sharp words for Mr Johnson in a frank phone call this afternoon.

The Taoiseach has upped the ante in the latest Brexit standoff ahead of a crisis one-on-one chat with the British Prime Minister.

Mr Martin spoke in angry and serious tones when he told the Dail that the British Government had “undermined trust” in announcing they plan to row back on last year’s Brexit deal on the North.

And the Taoiseach expressed his shock in not getting a “heads-up” on the serious proposed U-turn from Mr Johnson’s Government.

Micheal Martin, Boris Johnson are posing for a picture: UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (right) and Taoiseach Micheal Martin ahead of a meeting at Hillsborough Castle during the Prime Minister's visit to Belfast © Brian Lawless/PA Wire UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson (right) and Taoiseach Micheal Martin ahead of a meeting at Hillsborough Castle during the Prime Minister's visit to Belfast

New legislation has been teed-up for the Houses of Parliament this evening which will allow ministers to effectively get around binding agreements already entered into with Ireland and the EU.

The deal already done allows for no border on the island of Ireland after Brexit and a special customs position for Northern Ireland.

Mr Martin told the Dáil this morning that the latest UK moves break trust, while Sinn Féin leader, Mary Lou McDonald was scathing of the new approach from “perfidious Alban.”

Mr Martin said: “We have to be very clear where we stand in terms of the Withdrawal Agreement."

And he said he will be letting Boris know this later today.

a woman riding a bike on a city street: Sinn Fein President Mary Lou McDonald © Gareth Chaney/Collins Sinn Fein President Mary Lou McDonald

“I will be registering our complete opposition to the decision that is being taken," he added.

“Proper negotiations are conducted on a ‘no surprise’ basis….. and to drag Northern Ireland back into this is extremely divisive - and dangerous.

“This statement undermines trust.

“There was no ‘heads-up’ on this, so to speak.

“It represents a very new departure in terms of international relations.”

Ms McDonald brought up the issue during Leaders’ Questions, where she said: “Perfidious Alban is alive and well and living in Downing Street.”

She called on the Taoiseach to: “Make it clear to him (Boris Johnson) that there can be no reneging on the Irish protocol.”

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