Arlene Foster slams the outcome from the meeting between Gove and EU Commission Vice President: It felt like we had to move on “as if nothing had happened”.

Arlene Foster
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Arlene Foster slams the outcome from the meeting between Gove and EU Commission Vice President: It felt like we had to move “as if nothing had happened”.

On the 11th of February Micheal Gove and Commission Vice President met for an emergency meeting regarding the fallout due to EU attempting to trigger Article 16.

In a government statement which shed light on what went on. They said they had “a frank but constructive discussion, and taking into account the views expressed on the 3rd of February by the First Minister and deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland.”

They agreed to: “Reiterate their full commitment to the Good Friday (Belfast) Agreement and to the proper implementation of the Protocol – protecting the gains of the peace process, maintaining stability, avoiding a hard border on the island of Ireland and impacting as little as possible on the everyday life of communities in both Ireland and Northern Ireland.”

“spare no effort to implement solutions mutually agreed on the 17th of December, as they form a foundation for our cooperation

intensify the work of the Specialised Committee on the Protocol in order to address all outstanding issues, with the shared objective to find workable solutions on the ground”

“underpin this work by further joint engagement by the UK and the EU with business groups and civic society in Northern Ireland.”

“convene the Joint Committee no later than the 24th of February to provide the necessary political steer and approval to this work in the spirit of collaboration, responsibility and pragmatism.”

The question remains, is this a strong enough reaction to what the EU attempted to implement?


DUP leader Arlene Foster didn’t seem to think the talks went well and felt the Commission Vice President was delivering lip service without substance.

Arlene said: “Well, I wasn’t surprised because I sat in on the meeting between Michael Gove and Maros Sefcovic last week and it really was an occasion of putting his head in the sand and his fingers in his ears.

“There was complete ‘as if nothing had happened’ the Friday before in terms of the Article 16 triggering by the European Commission and that we should all just move along and pretend that it hadn’t happened.”

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