General Election

Video: Jeremy Corbyn reveals 'damning' government document detailing 'falsehoods' over Brexit border checks

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn holds up a leaked document relating to Northern Ireland, during a press conference in central London, whilst on the General Election campaign trail. Picture by Jonathan Brady/PA Wire 

Jeremy Corbyn has said he has obtained a confidential report which "drives a coach and horses" through Boris Johnson's claim that there will be no border in the Irish Sea under his Brexit plan.

The Labour leader said the leaked document, marked "official, sensitive", provides the "cold, hard evidence" that the Prime Minister has been "misleading" people about his withdrawal deal.

Brandishing a document, titled Northern Ireland Protocol: Unfettered Access to the UK Internal Market, at a press conference in central London, the Labour leader said it was proof there would be customs checks between Great Britain and Northern Ireland after Brexit.

The 15-page document shared by Mr Corbyn appears to be a slideshow prepared by 
the British treasury.

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn holds up a leaked document relating to Northern Ireland, during a press conference in central London, whilst on the General Election campaign trail. Picture by Jonathan Brady/PA Wire 

Mr Corbyn said the document painted a "damning picture" of the British prime minister's deal, especially when it came to Northern Ireland.

"We have now caught Johnson red-handed misrepresenting his own Brexit deal," he told journalists.

Mr Johnson had said there would be no checks between Northern Ireland and Great Britain under his exit terms, but Mr Corbyn said the document suggested that was not true.

The Labour leader said page five of the document stated: "There will be customs declarations and security checks between Northern Ireland and Great Britain."

He added: "It is there in black and white. It says there will be customs declarations, absolutely clearly, for trade going from Northern Ireland to Great Britain.

"The government cannot rule out regulatory checks, rules of origin checks and animal and public health checks also.

"For trade going the other way, from Great Britain to Northern Ireland, there will be all of the above plus potentially damaging tariffs."

"What we have here is a confidential report by Johnson's own government, marked official, sensitive, that exposes the falsehoods that Boris Johnson has been putting forward," he said.

"This is cold hard evidence that categorically shows the impact a damaging Brexit deal would have on large parts of our country."

Mr Corbyn said the report claimed Mr Johnson's deal will be "highly disruptive to the Northern Irish economy".

"It says this deal will be the equivalent of imposing tariffs on 30% of all purchases made in Northern Ireland," he said.

The Labour leader also said the report warns of the potential for fraud, saying Northern Ireland could become a "backdoor into the GB market for the avoidance of import duties".

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General Election