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9/18, 9:31 AM (Source: TeleTrader)
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Barnier: EU wants to avoid physical border in Ireland

European Union's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said on Wednesday that the bloc wants to avoid the return of a hard border on the island of Ireland after the United Kingdom leaves the EU. However, he warned the UK once again that it must offer a "legally operative solution" to replace the backstop if it wants the clause removed from the existing deal.

"We don’t want to go back to a physical border between N.Ireland and Republic of Ireland, we want to protect the provisions of Good Friday Agreement fully and we want to protect the integrity of our single market," Barnier stated. He added that the UK government did inform the EU about "aspects of the backstop they don't like" but insisted that wasn't "enough" to have it removed from the withdrawal agreement.

Barnier called on Britain to provide an alternative solution which "fully responds to each one of the problems, addresses each one of the risks created by Brexit."

Breaking the News / NP