Long has ‘frank and candid’ discussion with new Prime Minister over Brexit and talks

Alliance Leader Naomi Long MEP has said she had a “frank and candid” exchange of views with Prime Minister Boris Johnson, telling him Brexit is adding to the chaos stopping the restoration of devolution here.

Mrs Long was speaking after meeting Mr Johnson for the first time. She said she left the meeting unaware if the Prime Minister has a plan to stop a no deal Brexit, but “if he does, he certainly disguises it well”.

“Today was a frank and candid exchange of views, both about the state of play in the talks to restore Stormont but also the approach the UK Government is taking when it comes to Brexit and the potential for no deal if the Government doesn’t have any other plans,” she said.

“It is the responsibility of the Prime Minister to come up with such a plan and do so quickly, given how close we are to the cliff edge of a no deal Brexit. Certainly, I left today’s meeting unaware if the Prime Minister has a plan but if he does, he certainly disguises it well.

“We made it absolutely clear the catastrophic impact a no deal Brexit in particular would have in devastating businesses especially. I hope that hit the mark and he understands how serious this situation is.

“Brexit is not the only cause for the lack of an Assembly but it is adding massively to the chaos preventing that. The Prime Minister was told in no certain terms he needs a plan to tackle this and needs one fast. By doing that, we can perhaps get a period of stability and try to get devolution restored.”