Trump adviser Bolton: U.S. would enthusiastically support a UK choice for no-deal Brexit





By Steve Holland

LONDON (Reuters) - The United States would enthusiastically support a no-deal Brexit if that is what the British government decided to do, U.S. national security adviser John Bolton said on Monday during a visit to London aimed at reassuring Britain over UK-U.S. ties.

Bolton told British Prime Minister Boris Johnson that President Donald Trump wants to see a successful British exit from the European Union on Oct. 31 and that Washington will be ready to work fast on a U.S.-UK free trade agreement.

Johnson wants the EU to renegotiate the terms of Britain's exit ahead of an Oct. 31 departure date, but the EU says it will not alter the part of the deal Johnson says must be changed.

The impasse leaves Britain facing an exit without any formal transition period or legal agreement covering issues such as trade, data transfers and border policy.

"If that's the decision of the British government we will support it enthusiastically, and that's what I'm trying to convey. We're with you, we're with you," Bolton told reporters after his first day of meetings.

As Britain prepares to leave the European Union, its biggest geopolitical shift since World War Two, many diplomats expect London to become increasingly reliant on the United States.

Bolton, in London for two days of talks, is seeking an improved U.S.-British relationship with Johnson after sometimes tense ties between Trump and Johnson's predecessor, Theresa May.

He said British officials had given him an unmistakable sense that they were determined to honour the 2016 referendum vote to leave the EU. Bolton offered his support for this stance:

"The fashion in the European Union: When the people vote the wrong way from the way the elites want to go, it's to make the peasants vote again and again until they get it right," he said.


TRADE DEAL

The central message Bolton was delivering is that the United States would help cushion Britain's exit from the EU with a free trade deal that is being negotiated by U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and his British counterpart, Liz Truss.

Bolton said Britain and the United States could agree trade deals on a sector-by-sector basis, leaving more difficult areas in the trading relationship until later.

He said the ultimate aim was a comprehensive trade deal, but highlighted that financial services could be one of the more difficult industries to reach an agreement on.

Earlier a senior Trump administration official told travelling reporters the president had wanted to work with the May government on a trade deal but her government "didn't want do it. This government does. We're very happy about it."

Trump believes that "when it comes to trade negotiations the EU is worse than China, only smaller", the official said.

Johnson spoke to Trump on Monday, discussing Brexit, trade and economic issues, his office said. "They discussed global economic issues and trade, and the prime minister updated the president on Brexit," Downing Street said.

"The president expressed his appreciation for the United Kingdom's steadfast partnership in addressing global challenges and looks forward to meeting with him (Johnson) personally in the near future," the White House said.


IRAN AND CHINA

Bolton had been expected to urge officials from Johnson's newly formed, eurosceptic government to align its policy on Iran more along the lines of the United States, which has pushed a much tougher line against Tehran since withdrawing from world powers' 2015 nuclear agreement with Tehran.

But, after his meetings Bolton said talks on some of these thornier diplomatic issues could wait.

Bolton said his message had been: "We're not here to pressure you on this ... We want to be helpful on Brexit."

Britain, one of three European partners to the deal along with Germany and France, has so far backed the EU in sticking with the accord known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

But the seizure of a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz by Iran last month has put pressure on London to consider a more robust stance.

British marines seized an Iranian vessel, which is suspected of smuggling oil to Syria, off the coast of Gibraltar on July 4. This month, Britain joined the United States in a maritime security mission in the Gulf to protect merchant vessels.

Trump has also sought Britain's help in getting tougher on the Chinese telecommunications firm Huawei out of concern that its next-generation 5G technology represent a national security risk. Washington wants its allies, including Britain, to avoid using equipment from Huawei.


(Reporting Steve Holland; Editing by Guy Faulconbridge, Mark Heinrich and Alison Williams)

COMMENTS

More Related News

Mount Rushmore: Isn
Mount Rushmore: Isn't it time to talk about its Native American history?​​​​​​​

As the U.S. and NFL reckon with their relationship to Native Americans, Mount Rushmore remains almost completely devoid of important history.

Leading Homeland Security Under a President Who Embraces
Leading Homeland Security Under a President Who Embraces 'Hate-Filled' Talk

WASHINGTON -- Elaine C. Duke, then President Donald Trump's acting secretary of homeland security, arrived at the Roosevelt Room, down the hall from the Oval Office, on a steamy August afternoon in 2017 expecting a discussion about Trump's pledge to terminate DACA, the Obama-era protections for young immigrants. Instead, she said, it was "an ambush.""The room was stacked," she recalled. Stephen Miller, the architect of the president's assault on immigration, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and other White House officials demanded that she sign a memo ending the program, which they had already concluded was illegal. She did not disagree, but she chafed at being cut out of the real...

Trump wears mask while visiting wounded soldiers, medical workers at Walter Reed hospital
Trump wears mask while visiting wounded soldiers, medical workers at Walter Reed hospital

Trump, who has been criticized for not wearing a mask at public events, donned one while visiting wounded soldiers at Walter Reed hospital

Trump wears mask in public for first time during pandemic
Trump wears mask in public for first time during pandemic
  • World
  • 2020-07-11 21:43:35Z

President Donald Trump wore a mask during a visit to a military hospital on Saturday, the first time the president has been seen in public with the type of facial covering recommended by health officials as a precaution against spreading or becoming infected by the novel coronavirus. Trump flew by helicopter to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in suburban Washington to meet wounded servicemembers and health care providers caring for COVID-19 patients. As he left the White House, he told reporters: "When you're in a hospital, especially ... I think it's a great thing to wear a mask."

Romney, breaking with GOP, criticizes Trump for commuting Roger Stone
Romney, breaking with GOP, criticizes Trump for commuting Roger Stone's prison sentence

The Utah Senator was the first prominent voice in the Republican Party to publicly disavow the president's decision to erase Stone's prison sentence.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

  • paymydoctor
    (2019-08-21 08:51:06Z)

    PayMyDoctor is a successful online entrance that enables you to make installments on the web. This is an entryway overseen by Allscripts Healthcare Solutions.

    REPLY

Top News: Latin America