Boris refuses to meet EU leaders
The newly elected PM has refused to meet EU leaders unless they scrap the backstop, despite invitations from Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron. Speaking during his visit to Scotland, Johnson also said the withdrawal agreement 'is dead. It's got to go. But there is scope to do a new deal.'
He reiterated once again that it is “absolutely clear that the backstop is no good, its got to go” and said the same of the Withdrawal Agreement as a whole.
Whilst his official spokeswoman said: “The PM has been clear that he wants to meet EU leaders and negotiate, but not to sit down and be told that the EU cannot possibly reopen the Withdrawal Agreement.
“And that is the message that he has been giving to leaders when he has spoken to them on the telephone so far.”
It means that he still hasn’t spoken to Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, though a call is apparently set to take place soon.
Fianna Fáil’s Brexit spokesperson Lisa Chamber has said: “I think it speaks to the deterioration in the relationship between Ireland and the UK that has been allowed to slip over the last three years in particular.”
Whilst the SNP Leader and First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, told reporters that Johnson offered her no clarity on how he intends to get a new deal: “That makes me think that whatever Boris Johnson might be saying publicly about his preference being to strike a deal, in reality he is really pursuing a No Deal Brexit because that is the logic of the hardline position that he has taken.”
If only Boris was pushing for a hard Brexit, if only!