Truss ‘woefully misinformed’ says Stephen Farry
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Alliance deputy leader Stephen Farry has accused Boris Johnson’s Government and Foreign Secretary Liz Truss of playing dirty politics amid the protocol stalemate. Northern Ireland has plunged into a political crisis after the DUP refused to name a Speaker of the House.
Unionists said they won’t designate a speaker until their concerns over the Northern Ireland protocol are addressed. According to law, the Northern Irish Government cannot function without a speaker.
Speaking on LBC, Mr Farry lashed out: “I’m sorry to say but Liz Truss and her colleagues in government are woefully misinformed about Northern Ireland and badly out of touch with that.
“Well, they’re pandering to the DUP narrative and they’re also playing internal conservative party politics.
“They’re also pandering to the ERG.”
While the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has urged the Government to review the Protocol, the European Research Group (ERG) – a research support group of Eurosceptic Conservatives – has demanded it be scrapped.
With Liz Truss’ tough stance on the EU, the Foreign Secretary is tapping into both groups’ frustrations, Mr Farry said. He added Truss is acting that way for her own political advantage as rumours have spread around a potential conservative leadership contest.
“We’re seeing people docking for positions in terms of some future Conservative leadership contest.
“And Northern Ireland is the pawn in all of this.”
“We wait to see the challenges work through in a collaborative way, not war confrontation.
“And that the notion of breaching British national law will also have huge implications for the UK itself.
“The will arrears the risk of the threat of a trade war with the European Union at a time when there’s a cost-of-living crisis, where inflation could potentially hit 10 percent this year.”
Inflation is forecast to go over 10 percent – its highest in 40 years. The Bank of England has warned it will cause the economy to shrink, raising fears of a potential recession. The Treasury has ruled out an emergency budget.
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“There are already difficulties in terms of trade in the UK as a whole and in the European Union”, Mr Farry continued.
“So, it’s utter madness to be going down this road, particularly when it’s not actually wanted here in Northern Ireland.”
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson will travel to Northern Ireland on Monday in a bid to solve the political crisis. DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson has already warned Boris Johnson must “outline what he intends to do” about the Northern Ireland protocol.
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