Region Archives: EU

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“the UK does not want to see border posts for any purpose…”

Quickly, here’s a resume of Theresa May’s piece in the Irish News today: On the citizenship rights guaranteed by the Belfast Agreement, our position is clear. Northern Ireland remains an integral part of the United Kingdom, but it is also the permanent birthright of the people of Northern Ireland to hold both British and Irish more…

Some bold solutions, several welcome “principles” on dealing with the Irish border. The British paper in full is a serious document

The British paper on the border is at last the meaty  document  long called for. It makes a several  bold and practical suggestions for a seamless border  but leaves much up in the air, laying down “ principles” for future negotiations. Many of these  go far beyond the Irish border issues to the heart of more…

More than a hint of things to come on the Irish border

Once this period expires, the UK will look to agree either a “highly streamlined” border with the EU, or a new “partnership” with no customs border at all. This is the most optimistic reading of London’s proposal for “a temporary customs union.” introduced by David.  It gives a pretty broad clue of what they’ll propose more…

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UK Government publishes its Customs Union proposals

The UK Government has begun producing a serious of papers outlining its post-Brexit vision for relations between the UK and the European Union. The 14 page document outlines how the UK will seek a transitional period before attempting to set up a system that gives it basically the same access that it has now. There more…

Major survey shows deep confusion in UK opinion over Brexit

Extracts  from the BuzzFeed report Many Remain voters now largely agree that Brexit should mean the UK taking full control over its borders, leaving the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice, and paying only a small “divorce bill” to the EU, according to major new academic research. A groundbreaking project by the London School more…

Active north-south cooperation would be the intelligent unionist response to Sinn Fein’s vision of unity out of Brexit

There has been a delayed reaction of critical comment on the Oireacthas report on the implementation of the Good Friday Agreement in the light of Brexit. The report called for special status for Northern Ireland within the EU but coupled it with a drive to work for unionist consent to a united Ireland. This would more…

Leo Varadkar paper speech at QUB

Leo Varadkar: “we need to build more bridges and fewer borders”

LEO VARADKAR delivered a robust but polite lecture at Queen’s University Belfast this morning, his first public engagement in Northern Ireland in his new role as Taoiseach. The artfully crafted speech quoted local poets and Winston Churchill as well as ending with a positive story that echoed something he’d recently heard Jeffrey Donaldson say in more…

Trouble with Referendums: who is accountable for its delivery?

Nick Cohen makes a point I shared privately with several Leave friends during the EU Referendum campaign last year: Vote Leave dissolved as soon as the contest was won. The referendum thus dispensed with the most basic democratic requirements. The winners were not accountable for the promises they made. In their history of the campaign, more…

United Ireland

Report examining Brexit and a United Ireland launched

The Joint Committee on the Implementation of the Good Friday Agreement launched a report today entitled  Brexit and the Future of Ireland Uniting Ireland & Its People in Peace & Prosperity.  The report examines issues around Brexit and the a United Ireland and is a lengthy document. Here are some of the key recommendations from more…

Ireland map

Redeeming ‘North-Southery’ from Complacency

Complacency about the peace, about power-sharing, about cross-border cooperation, about, even, EU membership has allowed the unthinkable to happen. Such things that we have cherished and, indeed, brandished around the world as a sign of success have become playthings, tossed lightly up in the air in acts of outrageous political hubris. One after the other more…

A reply on Brexit to Nicholas Whyte

I don’t think I did leave out “the important dimension” of the Irish border, one of three issues identified by the EU before trade talks can begin. On this I agreed with the Brexit Secretary David Davis who asked how the border issue could  possibly be settled in advance.  A settlement on the Irish border more…

The looming ultimatum: Varadkar’s warning shot

Many thanks to Brian Walker for his posts yesterday and today about the latest developments in the Irish angle to the Brexit negotiations. I think one important dimension has been missed, however. Progress on the Irish border is one of the three priority areas of discussion where sufficient progress needs to have been made by more…