Breaking news: NI Agriculture Minister ceases all post-Brexit food checks at ports

Northern Ireland’s agriculture minister says he has issued an order to cease any post-Brexit food checks at the nation’s ports, citing legal advice he has obtained.
The checks are currently required under the Northern Ireland Protocol.
Edwin Poots, former leader of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), says he will seek an agreement from the power-sharing government on a way forward in the near future.
Speaking at Stormont, Mr Poots said: “I have taken legal advice in relation to my position from senior counsel. Earlier today, I received that legal advice.”
He added: “The advice concluded that I can direct the post-Brexit food checks to cease in the absence of Executive approval.
“I have now issued a formal instruction to my permanent secretary to halt all checks that were not in place on 31 December 2020 from midnight tonight.”
Northern Ireland’s deputy first minister Michelle O’Neill, of Sinn Fein, tweeted: “This stunt is an attempt by the DUP to unlawfully interfere with domestic, and international law.
“DUP fixated on their own priorities, which are clearly at odds with where the wider community is at. Health, Jobs, Housing, Cost of living crisis is where the rest of us are focused.”

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Written by

Claire Gordon