European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen issued a public apology on Wednesday, February 10, for “mistakes” made in triggering Article 16 of the Northern Ireland protocol in January.
“The bottom line is that mistakes were made in the process leading up to the decision,” von der Leyen told MEPs. “And I deeply regret that, but in the end we got it right.”
Von der Leyen said the commission would “do its utmost to protect the peace of Northern Ireland, just as it has done throughout the entire Brexit process.”
Article 16 was triggered during a row over supplies of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Vaccine, with the decision leading to severe criticism from the Irish and British governments. Northern Ireland’s first minister described the decision as an “incredible act of hostility”. Credit: European Parliament via Storyful