How to halt the vexacious legal pursuit of our brave servicemen and women

11 Nov

Lord Caine has projected a plan that would allow proceedings into suspected Troubles-related offences only if certificates are issued by senior legal figures.

Total Recall: Assembly Edition

20 Oct

Last week 31 MLAs including the DUP, TUV and UUP signed a petition and sent it to the Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly. That petition has led to a recall of the institutions. Tomorrow, the Assembly will sit for the first time since the death of Martin McGuinness. The prospect of the Assembly meeting again has many people raising questions. Can MLAs stop the introduction same sex marriage and abortion reform? Is there any prospect of a government being … Read more

Why the Irish Taoiseach has a vested interest in keeping the UK locked into EU economic structures

14 Oct

The Irish Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, has played a strong hand in the Brexit negotiations, bringing in both the Good Friday Agreement and any possible border friction, real or imagined, to try to keep the UK locked into the EU’s economic structure throughout any transition period and then in perpetuity through a future UK/EU Free Trade […]

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Northern Ireland depends on the EU’s fluid borders for survival

9 Oct

The prospect of a Brexit deal has foundered on the issue of the Northern Ireland border. Duncan Morrow (Ulster University) explains why the delicate relationship between Ireland and its dysfunctional neighbour depended on the EU’s fluid borders to survive. Any effort to ‘do’ Brexit on Johnson-DUP terms means that devolution in Northern Ireland will ‘die’, forcing an unpopular Westminster government […]

There is no reason to be bamboozled about dealing with the Irish border post-Brexit

8 Oct

In all the discussion about the Irish border, most of us can end up feeling pretty bamboozled by the whole thing.   However, there are some facts that are worth remembering which actually provide the keys to a future solution. Firstly, it is worth reminding ourselves of the present situation. The UK and Republic of […]

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Bonnie Greer’s intervention on Brexit and Ireland last week was spectacularly ill-judged

5 Oct

It’s hard to be surprised by anything surrounding Brexit these days, but sure enough the BBC did their best last week. This time it was the turn of playwright Bonnie Greer to weigh in on the debate as a panellist on this week’s edition of Question Time. What followed was fitting of an Alanis Morrisette […]

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How to protect both the UK border and EU Single Market in a post-Brexit world

5 Oct

Further to this piece of 19th September investigating the risk of increased smuggling across the Irish border after Brexit, we set out below a legally operable cross-agency operational plan to be established between the Customs and Enforcement Agencies of the United Kingdom, Ireland and the European Union to protect both the EU Single Market and […]

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The Alternative – what if Ireland was still part of the UK and an in/out referendum was to be held tomorrow? (Lyric Theatre from 8 October)

4 Oct

Speaking to The Alternative’s co-writer Michael Patrick about new counterfactual play The Alternative – Fishamble’s winning A Play For Ireland – which is set in an Ireland that is still part of the United Kingdom, but on the eve of an in/out referendum.
leave the UK or remain. In the Lyric Theatre from 8-13 October.

It’s time for some statesmanship from Leo Varadkar

3 Oct

The path to a negotiated Brexit deal is now broadly dependent on the statesmanship of one man. The Prime Minister’s letter to the EU with a new Brexit offer has landed well in the UK with the support of the DUP, the ERG, Remain-supporting Tories, an important number of Labour MPs, even possibly some Liberal […]

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Boris Johnson’s new Brexit offer to Jean-Claude Juncker

2 Oct

What follows is the text of the letter Boris Johnson has today sent to Jean-Claude Juncker, setting out the UK Government’s proposals for a new Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland A FAIR AND REASONABLE COMPROMISE: UK PROPOSALS FOR A NEW PROTOCOL ON IRELAND/NORTHERN IRELAND Dear Jean-Claude, There is now very little time in which to negotiate […]

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Some special Brexit arrangements for Northern Ireland are likely – but the backstop was always a questionable solution

30 Sep

Is there an alternative to the Irish backstop? Even before the Withdrawal Agreement was finalised last year this question has been central to the Brexit debate. The EU and the Irish Government have insisted on the backstop as a guarantee of maintaining an open border in Ireland. Although they have pledged to look at alternative […]

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