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Sunak says door open for Boris Johnson to join campaign

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has arrived in Northern Ireland as part of his UK election tour.

It follows his surprise announcement on Wednesday of a general election for 4 July.

Speaking in Belfast, Mr Sunak repeated his wish to debate his Labour opponent Keir Starmer after accusing him earlier of lacking the “courage” to take part in weekly televised debates during the election campaign.

“Well, I heard this morning that he said he wanted to debate the British people rather than me,” Mr Sunak said.

“I think what the British people want are answers – answers to the questions about what he would actually do if he became prime minister, and how much it’s going to cost them in higher taxes.

“I think those are the answers that he should be providing.”

Mr Sunak also signalled the door is open for former prime minister Boris Johnson to campaign for the Conservative party.

He said he would welcome “any Conservative to come and join the campaign” and that he has “been in touch with Boris in the past and I said I’m very proud of the work that we did together”.

Mr Sunak also said the fall in the energy price cap shows that “our plan is working” and that “the economy has turned a corner”.

He added: “Inflation is now back to normal, wages have been rising faster than prices for almost a year and at the beginning of this year, the economy grew at a very healthy rate.

Rishi Sunak visited an advanced maritime manufacturing facility in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter

Mr Sunak visited an advanced maritime manufacturing facility in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter, where he spoke to apprentices and rode on a small zero-emission boat.

The boat has been manufactured by Artemis Technologies, a company that has received government funding to support its work.

Mr Sunak travelled to England, Scotland and Wales yesterday, on his first day of election campaigning.


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