Former UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid has said in a statement that he is unable to support the Internal Market Bill introduced by the British prime minister.
"Breaking international law is a step that should never be taken lightly. Having carefully studied the UK Internal Market Bill it is not clear to me why it is necessary to do so", he said.
It is not clear to me why it is necessary for the UK to break international law. I am regretfully unable to support the UK Internal Market Bill unamended. pic.twitter.com/ID0CeyXCeJ— Sajid Javid (@sajidjavid) September 14, 2020
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson responded to critics while speaking before the Parliament, saying that the bill is essential for the integrity of the UK and that it is an insurance policy.
"The intention of this bill is clearly to stop any such use of the stick against this country. That's what it does. It's a protection, it's a safety net, it's an insurance policy and it's a very sensible measure", he said.
Johnson also mentioned that he had no desire to use the measures. He accused the bloc of threatening Britain with a food blockade.
"What we cannot do now is tolerate a situation where our EU counterparts seriously believe that they have the power to break up our country. We do not relish the prospect of having to use these powers, at all. We hope very much ... that the EU will be reasonable", he said.
He further claimed that the EU is "threatening to carve tariff borders" across the UK.
The statement comes after the UK prime minister’s special envoy for freedom of religion or belief, Rehman Chishti, stated that he is resigning earlier today, citing disagreement with the government's Internal Market Bill that goes against the United Kingdom's withdrawal deal with the European Union.
The Northern Ireland protocol, which was involved in the initial Brexit Withdrawal Agreement, gave goods from Northern Ireland access to the EU’s single market, given that customs checks would not have been carried out on the border with the Republic of Ireland. Instead, goods from the rest of the UK at risk of entering the EU single market on the island of Ireland would have been required to undergo customs checks before entering Northern Ireland.