British Brexit Minister David Frost exits Boris Johnson’s government

British Brexit Minister David Frost resigned over disillusionment with the direction of Boris Johnson’s government, dealing a severe blow to the embattled prime minister as the Omicron variant sweeps the country.

The resignation of Frost, a core architect of Johnson’s tumultuous Brexit strategy, raised questions about the future tone of the European Union divorce and the immediate course of talks on Northern Ireland.

It also added to a sense of turmoil in Johnson’s Conservative government.

Frost said he was confident that Brexit was secure but said he had concerns about the government’s direction.

“You know my concerns about the current direction of travel,” Frost told Johnson in a letter released by Downing Street on Saturday.

“I hope we will move as fast as possible to where we need to get to: a lightly regulated, low tax, entrepreneurial economy, at the cutting edge of modern science and economic change.”

His resignation was triggered by Johnson’s tougher COVID-19 restrictions but also by a broader discontent with tax rises and the cost of environmental policies.

Frost said he had agreed with Johnson earlier this month to leave in January, but because his move had been leaked, it should happen with immediate effect.

“We also need to learn to live with COVID,” Frost said. “I hope we can get back on track soon and not be tempted by the kind of coercive measures we have seen elsewhere.”

Johnson said he was sorry to receive Frost’s resignation.