Look beyond Brexit, Boris Johnson will urge world leaders as he heads to annual UN General Assembly in New York saying Britain needs to be a dynamic global power
- The prime minister headed to the three-day summit today from Heathrow
- He will promise world leaders the UK will take lead on tackling climate change
- But his trip is likely to be dogged by Brexit and potential trade deals
Boris Johnson will argue that post-Brexit Britain will be a dynamic world power when he addresses the UN General Assembly in New York this week.
The prime minister headed for the summit where he will promise to take the lead on tackling climate change and bringing stability to the Middle East.
But Johnson is likely to be dogged by Brexit throughout his three-day trip to the General Assembly, the UN’s annual gathering of world leaders.
Boris Johnson boarding his plane at Heathrow Airport as he heads off for the annual United Nations General Assembly in New York
In search of a deal, Johnson is scheduled to hold talks at the UN with EU leaders, including European Council President Donald Tusk, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar.
A senior British government spokesman said talks with the EU so far have been positive, but ‘there is an awful lot of work still to do.’
‘What is obviously encouraging is that all sides do want to try and achieve a deal,’ he said.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said a no-deal Brexit ‘would have catastrophic consequences,’ including customs posts and other barriers between Ireland and Northern Ireland. But he said it would be Britain’s fault.
The prime minister will meet world leaders such Donald Trump, Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel at the summit
‘We did not invent the Brexit,’ Juncker told Sky News in an interview broadcast today.
He said: ‘We were never pleading in favor of any kind of Brexit. That’s a British decision, and so it has to be dealt with in that way.’
Johnson also has a meeting scheduled with President Donald Trump, who has called the British leader ‘a really good man’ and claimed that some refer to Johnson as ‘Britain Trump.’
Johnson is keen to keep on the good side of the mercurial president, since a future free trade deal with the United States is seen by the government as one of the main prizes of Brexit.