Brexit: Irish deputy prime minister warns Boris Johnson he will be 'in trouble' if he tries to rip up Theresa May's deal

Rob Merrick

Ireland’s deputy prime minister has warned Boris Johnson he will be “in trouble” if he enters No 10 vowing to rip up the existing Brexit deal.

Simon Coveney categorically ruled out any renegotiation of Theresa May’s failed divorce agreement – regardless of the UK choosing a new prime minister with a new hardline approach.

“If the approach is going to be to tear up the withdrawal agreement then I think we are in trouble – we are all in trouble,” Mr Coveney said.

He warned Mr Johnson, the near-certain next Tory leader, not to threaten the EU with a no-deal Brexit, which he branded a “give me what I want or I’m going to burn the house down for everybody” stance.

Mr Johnson, and his rival Jeremy Hunt, has insisted the Irish backstop must be stripped out of the divorce deal if it is to pass the Commons and a crash-out Brexit avoided.

But, speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr programme, Mr Coveney said it would be the UK “forcing a no-deal Brexit on everybody else”, if it happened.

“We want to resolve these issues, but we won't do it by being told what must happen to get it through the House of Commons. A new prime minister does not change this,” he vowed.

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