Wednesday, March 31, 2021
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The Brexit agreement is causing concern in Northern Ireland


– Many unionists are quite worried now. They feel that Northern Ireland is being cut off from Britain. Britain and the EU must realize how unstable and fragile the situation is. London and Brussels have a shared responsibility for the future of Northern Ireland, says Katy Hayward, a professor at Queens University in Belfast.

What is known as The Troubles, the long conflict that claimed 3,700 lives, is still an open wound in Northern Ireland. Despite the fact that more than 20 years have passed since the peace agreement, the peace process is extremely fragile. And the dividing lines between Protestant Unionists who want to belong to Britain and Catholic nationalists who want to belong to Ireland still remain.

“Northern Ireland blown by Britain”

– There should be no limit! Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom. Why should we pay tax on goods from another part of the UK? Boris has betrayed Northern Ireland. As usual, Northern Ireland is being blown away by Britain, says unionist Stewart Finlay.

The largest unionist party, the DUP, wants to scrap the Northern Ireland Protocol altogether and threatens to drop cooperation in Northern Ireland’s coalition government Stormont. Militant unionists, so-called loyalists, have informed the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson that they are backing away from the peace agreement. They recently suspended all co-operation with the Northern Ireland Police. In addition, border guards and local politicians have been threatened.

Postpones border controls in the future

The dispute between the EU and the UK over the Northern Ireland Protocol has led to the British unilaterally extending a transition period that pushes tighter border controls into the future. The EU claims that it is in breach of the Brexit agreement and has therefore initiated legal proceedings against the United Kingdom. Analysts warn that Northern Ireland has been caught in the quarrel between London and Brussels.

– I am concerned that as long as the EU and the UK do not cooperate and compromise on the Northern Ireland Protocol, the contradictions and tensions in Northern Ireland will only deepen. The militant groups could still damage the peace process, said Katy Hayward, a professor at Queens University in Belfast.

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Source site www.svt.se

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