An influential delegation of US lawmakers is heading to London as concern grows in Washington over the Northern Ireland Protocol.

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Following Boris Johnson’s threat to rip up parts of the post-Brexit trade deal, the White House has dispatched “at least half a dozen representatives from the US Congress” for a series of meetings in Brussels, Dublin, London and Belfast, The Guardian reported.  

The group will be led by Richie Neal, the “influential” chair of the House of Representatives’ ways and means committee, “which has significant power over future trade deals”, the paper said.

US-Irish relations 

Concern in the White House stems from Joe Biden’s commitment to preserving the Good Friday Agreement and Washington’s role as its guarantor. The president has repeatedly stated how integral the protocol is to maintaining peace and stability.

That Neal is being sent to lead the US delegation also underscores that concern. His “interest in Northern Ireland stretches over three decades”, The Guardian said. He also made clear earlier this year that while a US-UK trade deal was “desirable”, it would not progress if there was “any jeopardy” to the Good Friday Agreement.

Neal, one of the US’s “leading Irish-American politicians”, has also called on “political leaders in Northern Ireland to re-establish a government” as quickly as possible, The Irish Times reported following elections last week. 

“The people of Northern Ireland just underwent a seismic election, and now, their newly elected officials must carry out their democratic duty through the power-sharing institutions established by the Good Friday agreement,” he said.

“All parties must stay the course to find durable solutions to implement the …read more

Source:: The Week – All news


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