Nigel Farage unleashes fury at Boris over Brexit row with EU – but says he backs PMs plan

PM: Plan to amend Northern Ireland Protocol is ‘not a big deal’

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The lifelong Brexiteer and pioneer of the movement to get the UK out of the EU criticised Mr Johnson for folding to the demands of Brussels during negotiations in 2019. When he was first made Conservative leader, the incumbent of No10 vowed to “get Brexit done” by forcing the continent to renegotiate the deal it struck with Theresa May.

After brokering the Northern Ireland Protocol, he went to the country and secured a historic general election victory before finally seeing through Britain leaving the EU.

Mr Farage was one of the few to criticise the Prime Minister’s new deal back in 2019, claiming it failed to properly deliver freedom from Brussels.

With the Government now looking to take action to unilaterally change the deal after accusing the EU of being heavy-handed in its implementation, the former Brexit Party leader feels vindicated in his previous criticism.

He told Express.co.uk: “On the European Court of Justice, we warned them about that in 2019 and they didn’t listen.

“Why did we sign up to the Protocol in the first place? The DUP didn’t want it and neither did the Brexit Party.”

Under the terms of the Protocol, the European Court of Justice remains the sole arbiter of disputes between London and Brussels regarding Northern Ireland.

Unionists have repeatedly warned it risks being a biased legal system with no chance of the UK getting fair treatment.

Earlier this year the DUP effectively collapsed Northern Ireland’s devolved government, refusing to rejoin the Stormont Executive until their problems with the Protocol were addressed.

As well as concerns over legal arbitration, the DUP warns bureaucratic customs checks on goods crossing the Irish Sea from Britain are undermining Northern Ireland’s place in the UK.

On Monday the UK Government unveiled new legislation that would give them the power to overrule aspects of the Protocol.

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The controversial plans, that the EU claims are illegal, would see the introduction of a “green channel” for goods moving from Britain to Northern Ireland, a change to tax rules and an end to the European Court of Justice’s role as sole arbiter in disputes.

The green channel would allow goods set to remain in Northern Ireland to enter the province with minimal customs requirements.

A red channel would be introduced on shipments bound for onward transportation across the Irish border where more stringent checks could be implemented.

Despite remaining critical of Mr Johnson’s tactics in 2019, Mr Farage does give credit to the Prime Minister for his new plan to finally address the issues outlined by the DUP.

“The idea of a green and a red lanes is a great idea,” he said.

“It will be a big help to ending the problems we see now.”

The Government believes their plan would go a long way to helping give reassurances to the EU, who insisted on the Protocol in order to prevent British goods entering the trade bloc through the back door via Northern Ireland.

MPs will vote on the legislation in the weeks to come.

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