Brexit boost: US-UK ties ‘significant and enduring’ regardless of EU, says Biden ally

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Speaking to BBC One’s Andrew Marr Show after the announcement of Joe Biden as the winner of the US presidential election, the Democrat said the future of the US and UK relationship will remain “significant and enduring” regardless of Brexit. Mr Coons dismissed claims the Democratic Party sees Prime Minister Boris Johnson as “Britain’s Trump” and said each nation’s leader should be treated on their own terms. 

He said: “I think the United Kingdom and the United States have significant and enduring ties and a lot of important work to do together.

“Around the world in the region of the North Atlantic community as well as in the far-flung nations of the Commonwealth.

“I think the UK-US relationship will remain significant regardless of the departure of the UK from the EU.”

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab dismissed suggestions that Joe Biden’s previous criticism of Boris Johnson would impact the relationship between the two countries.

Asked about Mr Biden’s previous criticism of Mr Johnson, Mr Raab told the BBC host: “We’re two years on from that and I thought it was very interesting hearing from Senator Coons that he’s not interested, and he doesn’t think that the administration are going to be interested in re-litigating old issues.

“Not least as we’ve left the EU, we leave the transition period by the time the inauguration happens.

“What he’s looking for, what the Americans will be looking for, I’m sure, is the opportunities of the future.

“I’m not saying that their interest in the Good Friday Agreement will in any way dim, I’ve explained why we’re absolutely committed to it, but what they are looking at now as Senator Coons expressed, but as others have to be as well, they’re looking at the opportunities for multi-lateral co-operation on COVID or counter-terrorism, cyber is a big thing, reinforcing the Nato alliance and, of course, climate change.”

The Foreign Secretary predicted Boris Johnson would be in touch with President-elect Joe Biden “shortly”.

Asked whether the Government had contacted the Biden campaign team, Mr Raab said: “Funnily enough, I exchanged messages with Senator Coons (tipped to be the next US secretary of state), our embassy are in touch with the campaign and I’m sure there will be a call between the President-elect and the Prime Minister shortly in due course.

“In the immediate aftermath there are plans to put in place, we want to give them the time and space to do that, but it is clear we are excited about the opportunities of working together.”

Boris Johnson has congratulated US president-elect Joe Biden and said he looks “forward to working closely together” as allies.

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Former vice president Mr Biden was called as the winner of Pennsylvania and Nevada on Saturday, giving him an insurmountable lead in the race for the White House against incumbent Donald Trump.

The Prime Minister tweeted: “Congratulations to Joe Biden on his election as President of the United States and to Kamala Harris on her historic achievement.

“The US is our most important ally and I look forward to working closely together on our shared priorities, from climate change to trade and security.”

His social media message was closely followed by Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, who tweeted: “It was a close contest and Donald Trump fought hard.

“Looking forward to working with the new administration – the UK-US friendship has always been a force for good in the world.”

Downing Street has played up Britain’s ties with the US under the Trump administration, with Mr Johnson keen to strike a cross-Atlantic trade deal after Brexit.

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