Michael Gove: The EU has acknowledged their mistake in triggering Article 16

Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove has said the EU has acknowledged it made a mistake in triggering Article 16 of the Northern Ireland Protocol and agreed a "reset" on relations is needed.

He told reporters: "I think the European Union recognises that they made a mistake in triggering Article 16 which would've meant the reimposition of a border on the island of Ireland.

"But now the European Union has stepped back.

Sign up to our Politics newsletter

Sign up to our Politics newsletter

Read More

Read More
Pioneering Scots DJ and producer SOPHIE dies
Michael Gove: The EU has acknowledged their mistake in triggering Article 16

"I've spoken to the European Commission vice-president Maros Sefcovic about this and we both agreed that we need a reset, that we need to put the people of Northern Ireland first."

Michael Gove has said it was made clear between Boris Johnson and EU chief Ursula von der Leyen that vaccine supplies would not be interrupted.

The Cabinet Office minister told reporters: "We're confident that we can proceed with our vaccine programmes exactly as planned.

"Last night the Prime Minister talked to President von der Leyen, the President of the European Commission, and made clear that we need to have the contracts that have been entered into honoured properly.

"And it was made clear that that supply would not be interrupted so we can proceed with our plans and make sure that our so far highly-successful vaccination programme can continue."

After invoking Article 16 to stop the unimpeded flow of vaccines from the European bloc into Northern Ireland, the EU later backtracked.

In a statement late on Friday, the European Commission said it was "not triggering the safeguard clause" to ensure the protocol was "unaffected" after widespread condemnation of its move as part of its export controls on vaccines.

Reporting by PA

A message from the Editor:Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.

 0 comments

Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.