Sunak addresses the problem of British “nations”

Rishi Sunak

After dedicating his first day as prime minister to economic issues that concern British citizens, Rishi Sunki Today addressed the no less complicated issue of the United Kingdom’s relations with developed nations. By participating in the British-Irish Council, a format that brings together officials from London, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Belfast, as well as the Irish Prime Minister (Taoiseach), Sunak was able to discuss for the first time as a British premier. Government on a range of important documents, from the Protocols of Northern Ireland to demands for Scotland’s second independence referendum. The British-Irish Council was established in the context of the Good Friday Agreement to promote better cooperation between the UK and the Republic of Ireland, and meets twice per year. However, since 2007 a British prime minister had not participated in the draft talks, which is why today’s meeting in the English city of Blackpool has taken on special relevance.

Sunak actually called for a “rebuilding” relationship with developed nations, particularly with the governments of Wales and Scotland, having been “snubbed” by previous Premier Liz Truss, who had been “snubbed” by her brief experience in Downing Street. I never felt the need to maintain it. Telephone conversation with Premier Mark Drakeford And nicola sturgeon, Complicating the picture is also the continuing political impasse in Northern Ireland, where the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has blocked the institutional process in the local assembly, Stormont, triggering the mechanism that would lead to new elections within the first three months. . 2023. With this lies the relationship between London and Dublin, which has essentially cooled in recent years due to the friction of the post-Brexit agreement with the European Union and disputes over goods in transit between the island of Ireland and Brittany.

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The resolution of the political crisis in Belfast will be the main theme of Sunak’s meetings, most notably the bilateral meeting with his Irish counterpart Michael Martin. There are already signs of relaxation on the part of the London government, with Northern Ireland minister Chris Heaton-Harris’ decision to postpone the new vote for the renewal of Stormont as much as possible. Touting the scenario of a return to the polls before Christmas, Heaton-Harris repeatedly explained to the press that he wanted to “give time” to the parties involved in the impasse to find a deal, with any elections slated for March 2023 at the latest. set on. , It is certainly a comforting gesture on the part of the British executive, which does not intend to worsen an already difficult situation and which fears to escalate existing tensions by promoting a new vote, fearing that it will The polarization between the federalists and will crystallize even more. Nationalists in Northern Ireland. Obviously Dublin has also expressed concerns about the crisis between the parties to the Belfast Assembly, which is why the meeting between Sunak and Martin could bring about a common strategy between the two capitals to manage the impasse. However, one such dynamic includes Brussels, where EU officials must approve any possible amendments to the agreement on Northern Ireland signed in December 2020. In this context, Sunak has also called for a change of pace. , advocating for more reports. Expressing a willingness to expand with EU institutions and reach an agreement focused on pragmatism between the UK and the EU “in the name of shared interests”.

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Compared to Wales and Scotland, Sunak has the advantage of maintaining a formally correct demeanor, calling Drakeford and Sturgeon the day before his appointment as British Conservative leader and prime minister, succeeding his predecessor in Downing. The opposite was clearly a gesture. street. Sunak expressed his intention and hope to establish a constructive relationship with the heads of government in Cardiff and Glasgow. Even in this case, however, political reality may hinder London’s will: Sturgeon has now campaigned for months to ask for a second independence referendum for Scotland, thanks to elections that favor certain secession. I confirm a solid feeling. from the rest of the UK. In the event of an economic crisis involving all of the British Isles, Sunk’s appeal for greater cooperation between developed nations and Ireland, therefore, may not be enough to put off the various issues on the agenda of local leaders.

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