Leaked Documents cites the UK faces food, fuel and drugs shortages in no-deal Brexit

Image: Published at World Future Council

Official government documents leaked to the Sunday Times show Britain will face shortages of fuel, food and medicine if it leaves the European Union without a transition deal, jamming ports and requiring a hard border in Northern Ireland.

The newspaper said the forecasts compiled by the Cabinet Office UK, set out the most likely aftershocks of a no-deal Brexit rather than the worst-case scenarios. UK Prime Minister’s office did not comment on leaked documents.

The Times reported ‘up to 85% of lorries using the main channel crossings “may not be ready” for French customs, indicating disruption at ports would potentially last up to three months before the flow of traffic improves’.

It suggests the government also believes a hard border between the British province of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, which is an EU member, will be likely as current plans to avoid widespread checks will prove unsustainable.

“Compiled this month by the Cabinet Office under The Times revealed, “the codename ‘Operation Yellowhammer’, the dossier gives a rare glimpse into the covert planning being carried out by the government to avert a catastrophic collapse in the nation’s infrastructure”.

“The file, identified “official-sensitive” — requiring security clearance on a “need to know” basis — is striking because it gives the most comprehensive assessment of the UK’s readiness for a no-deal Brexit.”

Asked about the Yellowhammer documents, energy minister Kwasi Kwarteng told Sky News: “I think there’s a lot of scaremongering around, and a lot of people are playing into ‘Project Fear’ … We’ve got to prepare for no deal.”

“We will be fully prepared to leave without a deal on the 31st of October.”

Read: Boris Johnson’s Brexit: A fictional promise or the final hope for the future of Britain outside of the EU?

Britain is heading towards a constitutional crisis at home and a showdown with the European Union as Johnson has repeatedly vowed to leave the bloc on October 31 without a deal unless it agrees to renegotiate the Brexit divorce.

After more than three years of Brexit dominating EU concerns, the bloc has repeatedly denied reopening the Withdrawal Agreement which includes an Irish border insurance policy that Johnson’s predecessor, Theresa May, agreed in November.

On Twitter, Brexit Minister Stephen Barclay said, “he had signed a section of the legislation which set in stone the repeal of the 1972 European Communities act – the laws which made Britain a member of European Union.”

Though his step was largely procedural, in line with previously approved laws, Barclay in a statement said: “This is a clear signal to the people of this country that there is no turning back (from Brexit).”

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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team

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Akshat Verma

Akshat Verma is an Associate Editor at The Kootneeti. His area of interest includes India-Pakistan-China relations and Indian Foreign Policy. He can be reached at team@thekootneeti.com || Twitter: @akshat_ver

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