Complete News World

Northern Ireland’s deal with the EU: What are Brexit hardliners saying?

Status: 02/28/2023 05:39 am

The British press celebrated the deal between Northern Ireland and the EU as a “milestone”. However, it is unclear how much support Prime Minister Sunak has for his Conservative Party.

Christophe Broslal, ART Studio London

The agreement was called “historic”, a “landmark” according to the commentary of English newspapers. But none of this will help Prime Minister Rishi Sunak if opposition within his own party fails.

Christophe Proszl
ART Studio London

Sunak spoke for almost half an hour in the House of Commons yesterday and explained why he believes the outcome of the negotiations represents a turning point: “Thousands of pages of EU law are being repealed, that’s the turning point, and these are the changes we’ve made and now it’s working as a United Kingdom going forward,” the Prime Minister said. He appealed to MPs.

Shows EU offers

Of course, EU laws will continue to apply, but in principle the EU is very accommodating to the British government. Because English products may be exported to Northern Ireland in the future, for example vegetables or sausages for Northern Irish supermarkets, the EU rules will not apply.

Behind Rishi Sunak, former Prime Minister Theresa May failed to negotiate an exit deal already in 2018 and was therefore dumped by her own party in 2019.

Johnson supporters could vote against it

But behind him were Brexit ideologues who saw any deal with the EU as a betrayal of voters. Is there enough in this compromise to satisfy them? Sunak, who failed to become head of Prime Minister Liz Truss’ government after two attempts, campaigned for a regional government in Northern Ireland with veto powers. A special rule allows regional parliamentarians to block new EU regulations.

It is currently difficult to assess how big the opposition is in your own party. British media reported that there were 20 to 30 MPs, mostly Boris Johnson supporters, who did not vote in favor of the deal. But this means: Sunak gets his own majority together and avoids embarrassment in parliament.

Northern Ireland’s DUP could cause trouble

Labor had already announced it would vote for a compromise with the EU, arguing it would defy politics: “This deal allows us to move forward as a country and not get bogged down in endless debates with our partners,” Labor leader Keir Starmer said. He once wanted to block Brexit, but now believes he can’t win an election by withdrawing from Brexit.

Northern Ireland’s DUP is in open conflict with the Unionist Party, which imposes conditions and actually wants the Northern Ireland Protocol to be scrapped entirely: “It cannot be denied that EU law is still in force in some parts of Northern Ireland.” TUP leader Geoffrey Donaldson said.

The party has just eight MPs in the UK House of Commons, but the DUP’s opposition has a huge impact on Northern Ireland’s regional parliament. The party has been preventing it from forming a government there – for months. Many Northern Irish people are irritated by the many tasks that need to be solved: the vision of a peace deal that was so difficult to negotiate 25 years ago and the vision of a conflict that still casts its shadow in 2023.

Agreement on Northern Ireland protocol dispute

Christoph Proessl, ARD London, February 28, 2023 5:46 am