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UK says US ties will go 'from strength to strength' whoever wins

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said he was not worried about the relationship between the two countries.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab. Picture: AFP.

LONDON - Britain on Wednesday insisted its close partnership with the United States was in safe hands whoever comes out on top of the tumultuous presidential election, while noting disagreement over the Paris climate pact.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, a populist ally of President Donald Trump, refused to be drawn in parliament when grilled about the Republican's premature claim of victory and his intention to ask the Supreme Court to halt the vote counting.

But Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said: "I'm not worried about the relationship.

"The contours of the opportunities and the risks always shift a little bit, but that needs to be set against the context of this bedrock and this wider set of interests which are so strong," he told Sky News.

Raab also downplayed differences with Democrat Joe Biden over the UK's plans for Northern Ireland after its Brexit divorce from the European Union.

Former prime minister Theresa May noted that the election dispute coincided with Trump's decision to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accord taking effect on Wednesday.

"We will soon know who will be the next US president. But, sadly, today also marks the US leaving the Paris accord - the world's foremost attempt to build consensus on climate change," she tweeted.

"Whoever is elected has an immense responsibility to help tackle our planet's greatest challenge."

Britain is due next year to convene the UN's next climate summit, COP 26, and Johnson's spokesman said the government was looking forward to a "successful hosting" of the multinational meeting, which has been delayed by the coronavirus pandemic.

"Obviously we've made clear to the US administration throughout this process that we remain firm supporters of the Paris Agreement," the spokesman told reporters.

He added that the transatlantic relationship would "go from strength to strength whichever candidate wins the election".

"Across trade, security, intelligence, defence, innovation and culture, few countries do more together."

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