Sajid Javid: No-deal UK ‘will still be a very safe country’
This morning Andrew Marr was joined by the Home Secretary Sajid Javid. With the possibility of a no-deal Brexit on the horizon, the interview turned to the implications that could have for the UK’s national security. When Marr asked if security could be diminished, Javid avoided a direct answer, repeatedly telling Marr that ‘we will still be a very safe country’:
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) February 3, 2019
SJ: There will be a change in capability, and there are capabilities that I’d want to keep… but they require cooperation with the EU, and I have to proceed on the basis that in a ‘no-deal scenario’ the EU will no longer allow us access to those capabilities… Most of these capabilities began in 2015. We were a safe country then, and we’d be a very safe country in a no-deal scenario.
Javid told Marr that he hoped to see a deal between the UK and the EU. Marr asked if there was any chance that the Conservatives would give in to Labour’s wish to have a customs union in order to help Theresa May’s deal pass the House of Commons. Javid said he did not feel this was a serious option:
SJ: In principle I am totally against a customs union because it would not, in my view, deliver on Brexit because we need to be able to have our own independent trade policy… I don’t actually think you would get a majority, so I just think it’s a complete non-starter.
In contrast to some of his more wary colleagues, Javid was optimistic about avoiding a hard border in any event:
Home Secretary Sajid Javid on alternative #Brexit