Boris Johnson Good Friday Agreement

The agreement was reached between the British and Irish governments as well as eight northern Ireland political parties or groups. Three were representative of unionism: the Ulster Unionist Party, which had led unionism in Ulster since the early 20th century, and two small parties linked to loyalist paramilitaries, the Progressive Unionist Party (linked to the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) and the Ulster Democratic Party (the political wing of the Ulster Defence Association (UDA). Two of them have been widely described as nationalists: the Social Democratic and Labour Party and Sinn Féin, the Republican party affiliated with the Provisional Republican Army. [4] [5] Apart from these rival traditions, there were two other assemblies, the Inter-Community Alliance Party and the Northern Ireland Women`s Coalition. There was also the Labour coalition. U.S. Senator George J. Mitchell was sent by U.S. President Bill Clinton to chair the talks between parties and groups. [6] During negotiations on the UK`s planned withdrawal from the European Union in 2019, the EU presented a position paper on its concerns about Britain`s support for the Good Friday agreement during Brexit. The position paper deals with issues such as the prevention of a hard border, north-south cooperation between the Republic of Northern Ireland, the birthright of all Northern Ireland residents (as stated in the agreement) and the common travel area.

[31] [32] Anyone who was born in Northern Ireland and is therefore entitled to an Irish passport under the Good Friday Agreement may retain European citizenship after Brexit. [33] As part of the EU`s Brexit negotiating guidelines, the UK was asked to convince other EU members that these issues had been addressed in order to enter the second phase of the Brexit negotiations. In order to protect North-South cooperation and avoid controls at the Irish border, the United Kingdom, under the leadership of Prime Minister Theresa May, said it was ready to protect the agreement in all its parties and “in the absence of agreed solutions, the Uk would maintain full alignment with the rules of the internal market and customs union, which are now or in the future. , North-South cooperation supporting the island`s economy and protecting the 1998 agreement” by acknowledging that “it is the restriction that nothing is agreed until everything has been agreed”. [29] [34] [35] [36] This provision was part of an agreement between the United Kingdom and the EU, which was rejected three times by the British Parliament. [37] May`s successor, Prime Minister Boris Johnson, initially cited the “Irish backstop” that was to be withdrawn from the proposed agreement,[38] but finally accepted it after the negotiation of a new agreement between the UK and the EU on 17 October 2019. [39] [40] In September 2020, Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis has informed the House of Commons that the UK government intends to violate international law in a “specific and limited” manner by introducing a new bill that gives the UK government new national powers to circumvent certain international contractual obligations to the EU, as provided for in the Northern Irish Protocol of the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement. [41] The bill introduced the following day sparked widespread outrage in the United Kingdom and internationally, with the Prime Ministers of Scotland and Wales calling the Conservative government`s proposals to try to take power and cancel decentralisation. [42] [43] Most parties in Northern Ireland expressed concern about the law, although some members of the Democratic Unionist Party, who had always opposed the Good Friday agreement, welcomed the law. [44] Prime Minister Michel Martin stated that “confidence” in the UK government`s plan had “eroded” [45] The agreement called for the creation of an independent commission to review police arrangements in Northern Ireland, “including ways to promote broad community support” for these agreements.