So the Good Friday Agreement? How do LEAVE propose to sort? (on Brexit and Northern Ireland - title amended by MNHQ)

(507 Posts)
RedToothBrush Wed 24-Aug-16 13:14:59

Go on. Lets have some answers.
Can we have a proper talk about how we can stop this affront to democracy and ripping up of a peace plan?

Peregrina Wed 24-Aug-16 15:08:56

Keeping an eye on this thread to see how quickly the replies come.

EachandEveryone Wed 24-Aug-16 15:09:47

Me too

RortyCrankle Wed 24-Aug-16 15:12:24

A bit belligerent OP demanding doesn't usually achieve what you're seeking. Still, no doubt your adoring Remainer fancub will comfort you.

I don't believe anyone knows at present. From what I have read, Stormont and Dublin are discussing it in the North South Council. Sinn Fein are, of course, pressing for unification but obviously the Unionists are anti. The creation of a hard border between North and South is obviously going to create its own issues.

After all that waffle, I doubt anyone knows and it's up for negotiation.

You might want to drop the teacher asking a question of backward delinquents approach next time.

Bearbehind Wed 24-Aug-16 15:21:27

rorty what is the point in sniping about the manner in which you were asked a question when, even if you were asked really, really nicely, you still couldn't answer it? hmm

WrongTrouser Wed 24-Aug-16 15:28:14

Are you implying that anyone who doesn't have an in depth knowledge of Irish politics shouldn't have been able to vote in the referendum?

If you are not, then I don't understand the aggressive tone of your challenge question.

sleepachu Wed 24-Aug-16 15:32:07

Sinn Fein are, of course, pressing for unification but obviously the Unionists are anti. The creation of a hard border between North and South is obviously going to create its own issues.

hahahaha

RedToothBrush Wed 24-Aug-16 16:01:59

Are you implying that anyone who doesn't have an in depth knowledge of Irish politics shouldn't have been able to vote in the referendum?

I'm implying that there is a fucking monster of an issue here that should have been talked about and dealt with by the powers that be prior to the referendum and they have been derelict in their duty.

AND NOW

Everyone calling for Brexit, has to face up this issue instead of brushing it under the carpet. Which it has been. Repeatedly.

I am yet to see a single answer on this issue from ANYONE that answers the Good Friday Agreement and I'm starting to get increasingly angry listening to people refer to Remoaners and it becoming increasingly obvious how few people knew of the issue before hand and even when informed simply go 'Not my problem'.

Yes it IS your problem. NI is not unimportant. Nor is it some far away place. It is part of our country. It is part of our history, and frankly YES every Brit SHOULD be taught about such a difficult part of our past, if you want me to be blunt about it (though I don't think education or knowledge should ever be a barrier to voting. You should know the basics regardless of whether there was a referendum)

The Good Friday Agreement has a great deal of importance to a lot of people both Republican and Unionist, Northern Irish, English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh and those who are in the middle and care nothing for nationalist politics but have been affected by it.

I think anyone who has been caught up in the Troubles in any way and for whom the Good Friday Agreement means anything deserves a response for what is being framed as an inconvenience or an oversight or worst still a failing of British policy that should be overturned.

Yes, I'm angry. Why? Because there are people who don't know or understand how important this is, and worse still, are flippant about it, outright dismissive or simply don't care.

Now is the time TO start caring because its the biggest barrier to Brexit and its an assault on democratic representation. Its a national disgrace how is been handled and still overlooked.

So whats the answer?

Its important if you really want Brexit as much as you say you do.

WrongTrouser Wed 24-Aug-16 16:29:19

If that's the case, I still don't understand why you framed your question as a challenge to leave voters. There are plenty of remain voters who haven't considered or given much thought to this issue either (I just don't buy the story that leave voters all spent months poring over every single issue including the GFA from every angle and in enormous detail. People voted according to their own priorities and for many people that will not have included

If you genuinely want to discuss the issue and increase people's awareness, and highlight why it is so important, that's great. If you really think that the answers to the issue are never going to be found unless some leaver on MN suggests them on your thread, I can't agree with you.

Especially given the subject matter, wouldn't it be better if people could discuss this issue without taking sides, baiting and finger pointing?

WrongTrouser Wed 24-Aug-16 16:31:30

Sorry, posted in error whilst editing.

End of first para: have included NI above issues closer to home.

MangoMoon Wed 24-Aug-16 16:34:35

Part of the Good Friday Agreement:

The agreement reached was that Northern Ireland would remain part of the United Kingdom until a majority of the people of Northern Ireland and of the Republic of Ireland wished otherwise. Should that happen, then the British and Irish governments are under "a binding obligation" to implement that choice.

Why is the Good Friday Agreement being 'ripped up' due to brexit?

Surely it remains extant because it is an agreement between the British govt & Irish govt?

As a result of the referendum, NI voted to remain EU although the overall vote went the other way.

Why does this affect the Good Friday agreement (other than the hard border debate)?

If it is just about a hard border, then surely there doesn't need to be one?
There is a hard border in the form of water between the British mainland and Ireland, so there is the 'British Mainland Border' already there.
Agreement between Ireland (as part of EU) & NI (as part of UK) would surely be possible wrt keeping an open border?

Apart from the hard border issue, perhaps this is the right time for a referendum within NI as to whether they want to unify as Ireland and remain in EU, or remain as UK & leave EU?

WrongTrouser Wed 24-Aug-16 16:36:52

My last para was probably poorly phrased and I am struggling to explain what I want to say. The referendum has caused so much divisiveness and anger but at some point, people need to be able to move beyond this especially to deal with complex issues like this (racism is another).

Peregrina Wed 24-Aug-16 16:37:21

It may not be a question for us opinionated bods on an internet forum, but it most certainly is a key question for our Politicians. So at the very least next time a Leave MP blathers on about hard Brexit, the question should be put to them 'What is your position on Northern Ireland?'

Try this offering from John Redwood
Or how about this from
Andrea Leadsom ? Ian Duncan Smith? Priti Patel? Nope. Stunning silence there too.

'Not my monkeys, not my circus' is most definitely NOT an option for any of these people.

RedToothBrush Wed 24-Aug-16 16:40:05

Why should Remain voters who voted to Remain precisely because of the democratic folly and dereliction of duty have to come up with a solution. I certainly voted in the way I did because of this problem. I've been biting my tongue on it, but since it is now in the courts and its looking like the government are just going to tear up the agreement and ride rough shot over NI, rather than come up with a solution then actually its starting to become something that is very problematic.

You are merely proving my point that there has been no taking of responsibility on this issue and its just going to be something that people who saw the problem coming are going to be left to carry the can for, and if no agreement is made then Remain voters will be 'blamed'. Especially if the court case is successful in saying that democracy in Northern Ireland was wilfully ignored and affronted.

The onus is very much on people to come up with an alternative when the only viable solution was the fact that Westminster and Dublin were perfectly aligned on the subject of Europe so it didn't actually matter which you viewed as the 'legitimate' government as power was devolved anyway and neither Dublin nor Westminster could dictate decisions and impose them locally.

This is entirely the point.

RedToothBrush Wed 24-Aug-16 16:44:03

Apart from the hard border issue, perhaps this is the right time for a referendum within NI as to whether they want to unify as Ireland and remain in EU, or remain as UK & leave EU?

You really think that's going to solve the problem?

It won't.

Why? Well start by have a look at the history of NI...

Peregrina Wed 24-Aug-16 16:48:45

To answer your question WrongTrouser about Remain voters not considering it, I am sure that it is true for many, although not me, but it would not have upset the status quo, and would not have risked the ripping up of an International Agreement.

The issue would have arisen if Ireland had held a Referendum and voted Leave, and we had voted Remain, but I doubt whether the Republic would have had quite such a cavalier attitude about the issue.

The 'hard border' is not a body of water between the two countries - it would be the re-establishment of border posts and custom controls. Otherwise there would be the possibility of goods and people being sneaked in 'by the back door'.

If the UK and Ireland had both voted to Leave then there would be no problems with customs barriers and need for border controls.

It is a complex issue, but it is one the Politicians have to resolve.

tiggytape Wed 24-Aug-16 17:19:12

Why should Remain voters who voted to Remain precisely because of the democratic folly and dereliction of duty have to come up with a solution. I certainly voted in the way I did because of this problem.

I suppose the answer to that is because we are where we are.
These issues affect everyone not just leavers and debating them as if we are still in the run up to June 23rd doesn't help. Even if you feel certain that no leave voter can ever explain to your satisfaction exactly how a Brexit decision is going to be workable alongside the GFA, how does that help given the vote has gone the way it did and we have a government determined to enact it?

We are all now at the stage of debating what sort of Brexit is desirable, workable and feasible.
Of course many hard remainers are going to say "no version of Brexit is as good as what we have / actively risks some of what we value so the answer is to remain" However that option isn't currently on the table.

The Brexit plan is not going to be drawn up only by those who want to leave (Arlene Foster in Northern Ireland for example is not being put in sole charge of negotiations there) and that's the reason why remainers need to have a say too.
If all they say is "I never voted for this. You want a good solution? Well - there isn't one," then that just leaves hard leavers feeding into the debate and all they seem to be saying on some quite complex issues is "It will be fine. Things will work out. We just want to leave the EU no matter what. Do it now."

SapphireStrange Wed 24-Aug-16 17:29:04

I'm very interested in this issue too.

Actually I'm quite frightened about what might happen.

And eager to see how May is going to resolve it.

MangoMoon Wed 24-Aug-16 17:38:09

Why? Well start by have a look at the history of NI...

I have read up on the history of NI.
What is your point?

RedToothBrush Wed 24-Aug-16 17:42:42

Even if you feel certain that no leave voter can ever explain to your satisfaction exactly how a Brexit decision is going to be workable alongside the GFA, how does that help given the vote has gone the way it did and we have a government determined to enact it?

The problem is not so much me saying this, but the fact there will be Irish Republicans saying this.

If it goes to a referendum then there will be either those Irish Republicans or the Ulster Unionists not liking the answer. This is why there was no referendum to decide the issue in the first place.

The split in the population, I believe is in favour of Unionists, but only just (the Catholic population is growing). So its incredibly divisive. We also saw just how divisive the EU referendum was, so the thought of a NI ones doesn't strike me as the best idea.

There are also issue over whether Ireland could absorb NI if they did vote that way. It might not actually want NI in reality, but can't say this obviously.

Its not just one side you have to satisfy here but two.

This is why the GFA was such an achievement.

Figmentofmyimagination Wed 24-Aug-16 19:03:38

Reminded again of this brilliant sketch

www.theguardian.com/culture/video/2016/apr/25/patrick-stewart-sketch-what-has-the-echr-ever-done-for-us-video

Peregrina Wed 24-Aug-16 19:15:42

I'd not seen that sketch before. I am saddened about how little people realise why the ECHR was drafted and which country was instrumental in drafting it.

Who in, for example, the 1890s or 1900 would imagine that a civilised, well educated country like Germany would descend into barbarism? Yet it happened. It's not even as though this chapter of history is not taught in schools either. At times, I despair.

caroldecker Wed 24-Aug-16 19:30:49

So, since about 2009, border controls have existed between the Island of Ireland and mainland UK, with travellers from both NI and Ireland required to have identity/passports when travelling. the border between NI and Ireland has not required ID/passports since it started.
Not sure why there is now an issue with people.

Bearbehind Wed 24-Aug-16 19:35:44

Not sure why there is now an issue with people

Yes, because it's simply about where you need to show your passport.

<hollow laugh>

Peregrina Wed 24-Aug-16 19:58:44

You don't need to have a passport, but are advised to have some form of identity documents, which can be a utility bill for example. www.stenaline.co.uk/FAQs/im-a-british-citizen-do-i-need-a-passport-to-travel
www.irishferries.com/uk-en/faq/passports-identification/

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