Its how EU work! Rees-Mogg mocks Brussels threats as bluster as he predicts U-turn

Brexit: Jacob Rees-Mogg weighs in on Northern Ireland Protocol

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Jacob Rees-Mogg joked to ITV’s Robert Peston that the European Union likes to threaten a no-deal, only to later back down in face of pressure. He remarked “you know how things work in the EU,” as the Brexit opportunities minister predicted an abrupt Brussels U-turn. The exchange took place as tensions between the UK and EU mount over the Northern Ireland Protocol.

Mr Peston grilled Mr Rees-Mogg on the chances of a trade war and EU retaliation.

The Brexit opportunities responded that if the Protocol cannot be successfully renegotiated, and the EU raises tariffs on their products, the EU risks damaging “their own consumers”.

He added: “What you’re saying is, does the European Union, in the midst of a global crisis in terms of inflation rising, wish to damage its own consumers.

“If that’s what EU politicians want to do then that is a matter for them but there are processes within the TCA that allow for appeals to be made, for investigations to be made, there is a proper process to follow.”

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He suggested that suspending the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement would require unanimity across the 27 EU member states – something he saw as incredibly unlikely.

When Mr Peston said that there was then “no scope for a deal,” Mr Rees-Mogg joked: “You know how things work with the EU.

“You know particularly well.

“Often they state very loudly they will not do a deal, and then swear they will consent to consenting.

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“And that’s something we have seen from the European Union time and time again.”

This comes as Foreign Secretary Liz Truss prepares to hold talks with the vice president of the European Commission later today.

British ministers are looking into whether to override parts of the post-Brexit deal on Northern Ireland.

On Wednesday, Boris Johnson told a press conference that the Good Friday Agreement was more important than the Northern Ireland Protocol.


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He dismissed suggestions of any possible retaliation from the EU for overwriting the Protocol as “crazy,” adding there was no need for “drama”.

Attorney General Suella Braverman is understood to have approved the scrapping of swathes of the agreement.

EU diplomats said Brussels was likely to respond to any unilateral UK move by restarting legal action for failing to impose full border checks in Northern Ireland.

The White House has also intervened as Joe Biden issued a last-minute appeal for the UK to show “courage, cooperation, and leadership” to avoid a trade war.

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