An honorary consul in the pandemic

7 July 2020

On 2 July 2020 I received an email from Razvan Constantinescu, the energetic Romanian Honorary-Consul General for the south-west of England based in Bristol and president of the Bristol Consular Corps. This told me how the Covid 19 pandemic first revolutionised the nature of his work load, and then reduced it to a ‘walk in the park’. Read more.

An honorary consul in the pandemic2020-07-07T18:43:34+01:00

The hole in the fence

14 June 2020

I am a keen gardener, and during the lockdown I had the great good fortune to be allowed by our neighbour to take over the care of her very large, tree-lined, and blissfully quiet garden. The weather was also unusually good, so I spent on average 6 hours a day working in it through late March, April and May. I could have wished for nothing more. Read more.

The hole in the fence2020-06-14T16:53:30+01:00

EU-UK video-conferencing. All for show?

12 June 2020

The future relationship negotiations between Britain and the EU, which commenced on 3 March 2020, teach many lessons in the art of negotiation. Among these are the obvious value of certain kinds of deadline and the less obvious value of publicly announcing ‘red lines’ before talks start. For present purposes I shall concentrate on what they reveal about video-conferencing and whether it has all been for show. Read more.

EU-UK video-conferencing. All for show?2020-06-16T08:18:36+01:00

Pandemic boost for video-conferencing?

14 March 2020

As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, it has been announced that the second round of face-to-face talks on the UK’s new relationship with the EU, due to take place in London next week with the arrival of an EU delegation of over 100 trade experts, has been cancelled. Video-conferencing has been officially suggested as a possible alternative. Read more.

Pandemic boost for video-conferencing?2020-06-05T13:48:56+01:00

Sacoolas, extradition and diplomatic immunity

27 January 2020

The US Department of State has announced its conclusion, without even a whiff of supporting argument, that requiring Anne Sacoolas to return to the UK to face a criminal charge would set a precedent that would weaken diplomatic law. This is the opposite of the truth. Read more.

Sacoolas, extradition and diplomatic immunity2020-06-03T13:46:33+01:00

The Perm Rep and the unsigned letter

24 October 2019

A recent development in Brexit has provided interesting evidence of the role of ambassadors in clarifying their governments’ intentions, however contradictory they might be. Read more.

The Perm Rep and the unsigned letter2020-06-03T13:52:53+01:00