May says fears about Northern Ireland Brexit backstop 'unwarranted'

British Prime Minister Theresa May visits the Portmeirion factory in Stoke-on-Trent, Britain January 14, 2019. Ben Birchall/Pool via REUTERS

LONDON (Reuters) – The fears of some British and European Union politicians about ‘backstop’ arrangements for Northern Ireland’s border with Ireland are unwarranted, Prime Minister Theresa May said in a letter to EU leaders on Tuesday.

May said concern that a mutual desire to avoid triggering the backstop would be used as unfair leverage by the EU or by a future British government “is entirely unwarranted”.

“I strongly believe the fear about the EU’s intentions is unfounded too,” May added in her letter to Donald Tusk and Jean-Claude Juncker.

Reporting by David Milliken; editing by Michael Holden

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