A JOE Biden knuckle-rap for Boris Johnson over protocol problems was the “sensible thing” to do, Micheal Martin said.
The Taoiseach spoke after the US President jetted into Britain for G7 talks and a “sausage war” meeting with the UK prime minister.
Proud Irish American Biden is resolute the protocol, despised by unionists, must stay in place to protect the Good Friday Agreement.
The Taoiseach said the UK must resolve sea border issues amid British suggestions of unilaterally stalling the introduction of new cargo checks.
Martin said there had been a “clear message from President Biden and his administration that the sensible thing to do here is to have alignment” between the UK, EU and US.
He said: “We all share common values of democracies, that’s the clear message I get from President Biden. Therefore I think he’s saying to the United Kingdom, look, let’s do the sensible thing here.”
Earlier, via officials, Joe Biden urged Johnson to “stay cool.” That came amid a ticking off for the British PM for “inflaming tensions” in NI and threatening the peace process.
CALM THE ‘SAUSAGE WAR’
The US President, via a diplomat, “strongly urged” Britain to reach agreement and calm the “sausage war”, even if that meant making “unpopular compromises”.
That seemed to threaten the possibility of a trade deal with the US saying Britain’s sticking to EU agricultural rules would mean the issue would not “negatively affect the chances” of coming to a free trade deal with Britain.
However, the White House later denied President Biden had ordered US diplomats to criticise Johnson saying there had been “diplomatic conversations” with an “ally.”
Tensions in NI have been mounting over the protocol as a six month post-Brexit grace period comes to a close.
From July products, including chilled meats like sausages, will not be allowed to cross from GB to NI under EU restrictions.
That is sparking fury in London and Belfast as Brussels insists without new agreed rules the UK will be banned from sending over sausages.
The EU has even threatened to launch a trade war against Britain if it fails to meet its commitments under the Brexit divorce deal.
On an upbeat note, Martin said a so-called SPS agreement, which includes checks on animals and plants, could do away with the need for 80 per cent of sea border interventions.
He said: “I think what was really significant about President Biden’s message, he is saying that if you do an SPS agreement, it will not negatively impact on doing a trade deal with the United States.
“That’s important for the United Kingdom.”
Downing Street said the UK would continue to seek to work “consensually” with the EU to resolve the impasse.
Talks between Brexit minister Lord Frost and the European Commission’s Maros Sefcovic on Wednesday failed to make a breakthrough on the protocol.