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Rishi Sunak makes a speech outside 10 Downing Street after his appointment as UK Prime Minister Stefan Rousseau/PA
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Rishi Sunak vows to fix ‘mistakes’ of Liz Truss and warns of ‘economic crisis’

Congratulations have been offered by the Taoiseach who urged Sunak to work with the EU on Northern Ireland.

THE NEW BRITISH Prime Minister Rishi Sunak warned the nation is facing a “profound economic crisis” as he pledged to fix the “mistakes” of Liz Truss’s leadership.

The freshly-appointed Conservative leader braced the nation for “difficult decisions to come” as he made his first speech after meeting monarch King Charles.

Congratulations have been offered by Taoiseach Micheál Martin, who ”urged Prime Minister Sunak to move quickly” to work with the EU and find agreed solutions on the Northern Ireland Protocol.

Martin said there is a now “real opportunity” and added that both countries would need to work closely if they are to maintain support for peace and prosperity in Northern Ireland.

Sunak, 42, became the UK’s first Hindu PM, the first of Asian heritage and the youngest for more than 200 years.

He was appointed Prime Minister by King Charles after the monarch accepted the resignation of Truss after just 49 days in office, making her the shortest-serving leader in history.

In his speech from Downing Street, Sunak said it was “only right to explain why I’m standing here as your new Prime Minister”, saying: “Right now our country is facing a profound economic crisis.”

He said it is the lingering aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic and Vladimir Putin’s destabilising war in Ukraine.

Sunak said Ms Truss was “not wrong” to want to drive up growth, describing it as a “noble aim”.

He added: “But some mistakes were made. Not born of ill-will or bad intentions – quite the opposite in fact. But mistakes nonetheless.

“I’ve been elected as leader of my party and your Prime Minister in part to fix them – and that work begins immediately.”

He vowed to place “economic stability and confidence at the heart of this Government’s agenda”, after the financial chaos triggered by Ms Truss.

“This will mean difficult decisions to come,” he said, but he promised to repeat the “compassion” he showed during the coronavirus pandemic.

Martin said the two countries’ relationship remains vital to support peace and prosperity in Northern Ireland. 

“The close relationship between our two countries is built on shared history, deep cultural and economic ties, and strong people-to-people links.

“Our shared responsibility as joint stewards of the Good Friday Agreement, working together in partnership, is vital to support peace and prosperity in Northern Ireland, particularly now in the absence of a properly functioning Assembly and Executive,” he said.

Martin added: “I am committed to a strong and deep British-Irish relationship and I look forward to early engagement with Prime Minister Sunak on the important issues we face on these islands and globally.”

With reporting by PA

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