Lord Frost is a “tough negotiator” but the UK can no longer trust the EU going forward, MP for Clwyd West David Jones, has warned. Speaking to Express.co.uk, Mr Jones insisted Lord Frost won’t back down amid the EU’s threats against the UK over the Northern Ireland protocol. Indeed, Mr Jones claimed the EU had severely damaged its own reputation by threatening to block vaccine supplies entering the UK at the beginning of the year.
It comes as Lord Frost made the move to unilaterally extend the grace period for goods moving between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Following the move to do so, the EU threatened to take legal action against the UK over the protocol.
Mr Jones said: “They may pursue legal action but Frost won’t be fazed.
“They don’t like the fact we have a tough negotiator.
“They may go ahead with threats but their own actions have done a lot to precipitate the problems and undermine the trust in the whole process.
“Triggering Article 16 at the end of January has caused an immense amount of damage on the relationship.
“If they can do that, how we can have confidence in them.
“They must understand the dynamics of Northern Ireland. I’m concerned they’re playing a dangerous game.”
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A UK government spokesperson said: “These measures are lawful and consistent with a progressive and good-faith implementation of the protocol.”
However, the EU Commission claimed the UK had not informed European officials of the move to do so.
Outrage was also sparked in the bloc following an opinion piece from Lord Frost who claimed the EU was attempting to punish the UK.
UK officials have pointed to the EU’s threat to invoke Article 16 over vaccine supplies as a sign the move was an adequate one.
In light of the EU’s legal threat after having moved to invoke Article 16 in January, Northern Ireland’s First Minister labelled Brussels as hysterical.
Arlene Foster, who has called for the Northern Ireland protocol to be scrapped said: “As I understand it from the Secretary of State last week, the Attorney General has indicated that the small moves that were made by the United Kingdom Government are legal and therefore any legal action that will be taken I’m sure will be fought.