G7: UK and US in 'complete harmony' over Northern Ireland – Boris Johnson

There is “complete harmony” on the need to solve trade problems in Northern Ireland, Boris Johnson has said following his first face-to-face meeting with US president Joe Biden.

The two leaders met in Cornwall on the eve of the G7 summit.

Mr Johnson said the US, UK and EU all wanted to protect the Good Friday Agreement.

Earlier, Mr Biden warned that the UK- EU dispute over border controls should not “imperil” the peace process.

During their meeting, the two men also established a taskforce to re-establish travel across the Atlantic, after the US banned most British people from entering at the start of the pandemic.

They also agreed a deal – labelled the “Atlantic Charter” – which commits the two countries to work together on global challenges.

The G7 summit begins on Friday and will be the first time world leaders have assembled in person since the coronavirus pandemic.

Covid vaccines and climate change are on the agenda – but the on-going disagreement between the UK and the EU over post-Brexit regulatory checks on goods going into Northern Ireland from Great Britain look set to feature heavily in diplomatic discussions in the coming days.

Asked about the Northern Ireland protocol on Thursday evening, French President Emmanuel Macron said : “I think it’s not serious to want to review in July what we finalized after years of debate and work in December.”

“We have a protocol under which there is this Northern Ireland Protocol and we have a trade deal – it has been painfully discussed for years… if six months later, they say: “What we negotiated with you, we don’t know how to respect it”, then that means that nothing is respectable anymore.”