Today’s daily politics briefing
The country’s first minister made the comment after a meeting between UK and EU officials on Wednesday, which she described as “hugely disappointing”.
Her party, the DUP, has called for the protocol to be scrapped, blaming it for post-Brexit trade disruption between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
However, deputy first minister Michelle O’Neill, of Sinn Fein, hailed the meeting as “very constructive”, adding that “both sides committed to try and define practical solutions”, including issues with supermarket supply chains.
Over in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has insisted that political influence played no part in the decision to redact evidence submitted by her predecessor Alex Salmond to an inquiry into the Scottish government’s handling of harassment claims made against him.
On Wednesday, the Tory leader at Holyrood, Ruth Davidson, said the saga had called Scottish democracy into disrepute.
Sturgeon insists redaction of Salmond’s evidence is not political
Nicola Sturgeon has insisted it is “downright wrong” to blame political influence for the decision to censor evidence submitted by her predecessor Alex Salmond to a Holyrood inquiry.
As a result of the censorship, Mr Salmond refused to appear before the inquiry on Wednesday.
He alleges that a “malicious and concerted” attempt was made to bar him from political life through claims of sexual harrassment.
The inquiry by the Committee on the Scottish Government’s Handling of Harrassment Complaints started after it was found that allegations against Mr Salmond had been “tainted by apparent bias”.
Our political editor Andrew Woodcock has more details about the scandal convulsing Scottish politics:
Rory Sullivan25 February 2021 08:08
Foster blasts EU officials as ‘tone deaf’
Arlene Foster has described EU officials as “tone deaf” following a meeting yesterday on the Northern Ireland protocol.
The country’s first minister said the discussions were “hugely disappointing”, adding that the bloc has “refused to recognise the problems or offer any sensible solutions” to post-Brexit trade disruption.
She also repeated her calls for Westminster “to act unilaterally” so that Northern Ireland does not remain “cut off” from the rest of the UK.
“The prime minister told the House of Commons that there would be unfettered trade within the United Kingdom, yet the Northern Ireland protocol has completely ruptured the flow of goods from Great Britain to Northern Ireland,” she said.
Rory Sullivan25 February 2021 07:56
Morning, and welcome to The Independent’s live UK politics coverage.
Rory Sullivan25 February 2021 07:50