EU ambassadors to meet for talks expected to re-launch legal action against UK over protocol row

Boris Johnson's government believes the new Bill is legal and necessary to protect the Good Friday Agreement.

European Union ambassadors are set to meet to discuss the government's unilateral action on the Northern Ireland protocol.

They are expected to decide to restart legal proceedings against the UK following Boris Johnson's administration's move, UTV News political editor Tracey Magee has learned.

However, the EU is also expected to outline a package of new measures to ease the impact of the protocol during Wednesday's meeting (14 June).

Ministers had published a new Bill on Monday aiming to make changes to the protocol agreement, which was signed with the EU two years ago.

While the EU believes this breaks international law, the UK government believes it is legal and necessary to protect the Good Friday Agreement, but says it would prefer a negotiated settlement with the EU.

However, European Commission Vice President Maroš Šefčovič has been clear that there will be no renegotiation of the protocol.

It is thought the EU will restart legal proceedings against the UK government which it had opened last year, and announce further legal measures in response to the protocol bill.

They are also believed to be planning to announce measures to 'soften' the impact of the protocol within the parameter of the current arrangement.

The DUP is refusing to enter a power-sharing government with Sinn Fein in Northern Ireland until the issues are resolved.

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