Britain will not withdraw legislation as EU asks, says Gove

Britain's Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove leaves a coffee shop in Westminster, in London, Britain, September 10, 2020. REUTERS/Simon Dawson

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain will not withdraw the legislation that has plunged trade talks with the European Union into crisis, minister Michael Gove insisted on Thursday after meeting European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic.

“The UK government is committed to the implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement and the (Northern Ireland) protocol,” Gove said, referring to the divorce deal signed earlier this year.

“Vice president Sefcovic also requested the UK withdraw its internal market legislation. I explained to (him) that we could not and would not do that and instead I stressed the vital importance of reaching agreement through the joint committee on these vital questions.”

Reporting by William James and Elizabeth Piper; editing by Stephen Addison