World Brexit turns into a fiasco in Northern Ireland

23:30  04 march  2021
23:30  04 march  2021 Source:   ouest-france.fr

UK agrees to give EU more time to approve Brexit trade deal

  UK agrees to give EU more time to approve Brexit trade deal The UK has agreed to give the European Union more time to approve the Brexit trade deal struck between the two sides. The agreement was struck on Christmas Eve, just days before it came into effect on 1 January.MPs ratified the deal in a single day - on 30 December.But it has only been provisionally implemented, as the European Parliament argued it did not have sufficient time to scrutinise the agreement before the end of the transition period.The EU requested an extension to the 28 February deadline, something that has now been agreed to by the UK government.

es organisations paramilitaires unionistes d’Irlande du Nord ont écrit à Boris Johnson qu’elles se retiraient « temporairement » ​des Accords du Vendredi saint de 1998. © Ouest-France Infographic unionist paramilitary organizations in Northern Ireland wrote to Boris Johnson that they were withdrawing “temporarily” from the 1998 Good Friday Agreements.

As the tone rises between London and Brussels, paramilitary groups withdrew their support for the 1998 Peace Agreement, this Thursday, March 4, 2021. They refuse to see their province cut off from the United Kingdom.

Their letter threw a chill yesterday. Unionist paramilitary organizations of Northern Ireland wrote to Boris Johnson that they were temporarily withdrawing from the 1998 Good Friday Agreements. This pact ended thirty years of civil war (3,600 deaths) between the Catholics, mainly in favor of a reunified Ireland, and the Protestants, attached to staying in the United Kingdom.

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This warning shot raised fears of renewed tensions. Because if they say they do not want to take up arms again, the paramilitaries have never completely given up on violent actions . Since the entry into force of Brexit on January 1, hostile tags have bloomed on the walls. Port control officers have been threatened, recalls Elvire Fabry, Brexit specialist at the Jacques Delors Institute. Faced with the gravity of the situation, Belfast halted work on customs posts last week.

The paramilitaries, like many Unionists, feel betrayed by London. "They curse the establishment of a maritime border and control of goods between them and Britain," observes David Mitchell, a peace accord specialist at Trinity College Dublin in Belfast. With this protocol, the rules of the single market remain in force in Northern Ireland. This avoids the return of checkpoints, painful for the 30,000 people who cross the invisible border between this British province and the Republic of Ireland, Europe every day.

EU 'can't trust' UK in post-Brexit talks

  EU 'can't trust' UK in post-Brexit talks Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney says the EU is being driven towards legal action by the UK.On Wednesday, the UK said it would unilaterally extend grace periods for Irish Sea border checks, a move the EU said was a breach of international law.

But the North Irish are very dependent on British imports, especially food, points out Elvire Fabry. From January, they encountered new administrative formalities. The application of the rules of origin, for products that have not been processed in the UK, has resulted in the return of tariffs. The fresh produce shelves are empty.

Read also. Northern Ireland begins to dream of reunification

To limit the damage, London and Brussels have agreed to ease controls until April 1. Too short, in Boris Johnson's eyes. On Wednesday, he said he intended to extend that six-month grace period. Stupor and fury of Europeans. We informed them, swear London. Ulcerated, the European Parliament responded yesterday by refusing to set a date for its long-awaited vote on the Brexit deal.

This push by Johnson is nothing new. He had already requested, in vain, the suspension of controls until ... 2023! Unacceptable for the EU, Judge Elvire Fabry. Because during this time, London is negotiating free trade agreements with third countries. This would mean opening the door of the single market, without control, to goods from all these states.

How to get out of the deadlock? Boris Johnson postpones the deadline without offering a solution, observes the researcher. This illustrates the limits of its strategic approach in negotiations. And his unpreparedness.

Europe rights body reopens probe of N.Ireland lawyer murder case .
Europe's top rights body on Friday announced it would put the 1989 murder case of a lawyer in Northern Ireland back under its scrutiny, after London rejected a public inquiry into the killing. The Council of Europe's committee of ministers subsequently closed the Finucane case in 2009 but strongly encouraged UK authorities to continue discussions with the Finucane family on a public inquiry. It is extremely rare for the Council of Europe to reopen cases that have been closed. The decision means that the committee, which is responsible for following the implementation of ECHR verdicts, will regularly monitor the UK's progress in the case.

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