Boris Johnson has described dealing with Joe Biden as a “breath of fresh air” after the pair met face-to-face for the first time in Cornwall ahead of the G7 summit.
Attempting to play down ongoing tensions with the US and EU over Brexit, the prime minister insisted there was “absolutely common ground” in terms of maintaining peace in Northern Ireland by upholding the Good Friday/Belfast Agreement.
At a press conference following the talks, Mr Biden said he had a “very productive meeting” with Mr Johnson and the two men had “reaffirmed the special relationship”.
Earlier, a senior US official said Mr Biden had not come to the UK to lecture Mr Johnson about Brexit’s Northern Ireland protocol and is not looking to be confrontational or adversarial.
“He didn’t come here to give a lecture,” the official, who was unnamed in quotes given to Reuters, said. “He came here to communicate what he believes very, very deeply about peace in Northern Ireland.”
Covid outbreak closes hotel near summit venue
A hotel in Cornwall reportedly housing security staff for the G7 summit has been forced to close due to a coronavirus outbreak.
A number of hotel staff were affected at Pedn Olva in St Ives, a stone’s throw from Tregenna Castle, where world leaders are staying.
More from Liam James here…
UK to donate 30 million vaccines to poorer countries by end of year, with five million by September
The UK will donate 30 million “surplus” vaccine doses to poorer countries by the end of the year – including five million by September – after criticism it was dragging its heels.
Opening the G7 summit in Cornwall, Boris Johnson will also pledge to release at least a further 70 million jabs within the next year, as he seeks to display global leadership on the issue.
Boris Johnson invites Biden, Macron and Merkel to barbie on beach in Cornwall
World leaders including Joe Biden, Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel have been invited to a barbecue on the beach with Boris Johnson during their stay in Cornwall for the G7 summit.
The leaders – more used to fine dining and banquets on their trips abroad – will be served local delicacies on the sands of Carbis Bay on Saturday by chef Simon Stallard of the Hidden Hut, whose regular gig is in a takeaway shack on the beach at nearby Portscatho.
Our politics editor Andrew Woodcock has the story:
‘Together we’ll build back better’
Boris Johnson has sent the president a message of his own, saying the UK and US will build back better together.
An image shared from the PM’s official account shows the two leaders posing with their thumbs up in front of G7 sign.
Biden thanks PM for hosting him
Joe Biden has thanked Boris Johnson for hosting him today in Cornwall ahead of the G7 summit.
Sharing an image of the two men looking out to sea at Carbis Bay, the president said in a tweet: “The special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom is stronger than ever. Thank you for hosting me today, Prime Minister Johnson.
Climate activists target G7 leaders
There have been a number of protests by climate activists already this week in Cornwall.
Yesterday, Ocean Rebellion made a display of Boris Johnson “getting into bed” with an oil tycoon to highlight the G7 countries’ “backhanded subsidies to the fossil fuel industry”.
Greenpeace also targeted RAF Mildenhall as Joe Biden arrived in Air Force One.
The picture below shows a number of climate warnings on makeshift headstones in the front garden of a house in nearby Falmouth, where the world’s media is based for the summit.
Washington gets up to speed on Cornish ‘mizzle’
No UK event could ever be complete without a shower of rain.
And today proved no different with Boris Johnson and Joe Biden’s meeting at the picturesque St Michael’s Mount moved after the heavens opened.
But this was no ordinary rain. Rather, it was what locals in Cornwall call “mizzle” – a mixture of mist and drizzle.
The phenomenon has now made its way across the Atlantic to Washington.
“British outlets are describing persistent ‘mizzle’ as the reason for the venue change,” a Washington Post reporter wrote today while explaining the rescheduled meeting.
“For the uninitiated, the word describes a cross between ‘mist’ and ‘drizzle’ and refers to a type of damp and gray weather that is common in the Cornish summertime.”
Jill Biden praises Carrie Johnson as Biden quips he and Boris married ‘above our stations’
US first lady, Jill Biden, praised Carrie Johnson, the wife of UK prime minister, Boris Johnson, after walking together on the beach in Cornwall ahead of the start of the G7 summit.
My colleagues: Gustaf Kilander and Jon Stone report:
PM raised Harry Dunn case with Biden
Boris Johnson raised the Harry Dunn case with Joe Biden during their meeting in Cornwall.
Harry Dunn died after he was run over by a car being drive by US intelligence agent Anne Sacoolas.
She crashed into his motorbike outside US military base RAF Croughton in August 2019.
Ms Sacoolas had diplomatic immunity asserted on her behalf by the US Government and was able to return to her home country 19 days after the collision.
A No 10 spokesperson said: “The PM raised the tragic Harry Dunn case with President Biden and reiterated that the UK wants to see justice done for the family.”
Speaking after the meeting, the Dunn family spokesperson said: “Harry’s parents are very pleased to see that the PM has taken the opportunity to raise the case with President Biden at the first available opportunity.
“This rightly shows just how important this issue is and we are very grateful to the Prime Minister and his team for doing so.
“As all parties know there is no greater force on earth than the love between a mother and child.
“The family will continue to pursue justice until it is done.”
Emmanuel Macron’s attack on UK’s failure to implement Brexit deal wrecks claims of G7 ‘harmony’
Emmanuel Macron has launched an angry attack on the UK’s failure to implement the Brexit deal for Northern Ireland, wrecking Boris Johnson’s attempts to claim there is “harmony” at the G7 summit.
Our deputy politics editor Rob Merrick reports: