Brexit Bill: What happens now? Boris wins crucial vote

Northern Ireland Protocol Bill slammed by EU ambassador

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

Brexit led to profound changes in Britain’s relationship with the rest of the world but none were more pressing than in Northern Ireland. The country shares a land border with the Republic of Ireland – an EU member – and has caused a headache for the Government over its trading arrangements.

What is the problem about?

Special trading arrangements were agreed between the UK and EU after Brexit which means goods going from the island of Great Britain to Northern Ireland are checked against EU rules.

It was agreed that handling the checks on the Northern Ireland-EU border would be too controversial due to the history of violence in the region.

But now the Government wants to rip up some of the agreement, including checks on goods and animal and plant products travelling from Great Britain to Northern Ireland.

Brussels said the UK’s proposed changes to the Northern Ireland Protocol are a “breach of international law” and has launched legal action against the UK in response to the proposed changes.

Boris Johnson said earlier today that the agreement needs to be fixed and trade barriers removed between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

He told reporters at the G7 Summit in Germany: “What we are trying to do is fix something that I think is very important to our country, which is the balance of the Belfast Good Friday Agreement.

“You have got one tradition, one community, that feels that things really aren’t working in a way that they like or understand, you’ve got unnecessary barriers to trade between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.”

He added that the changes could be made very quickly if Parliament is willing to back them.

What do people in Northern Ireland think?

Ian Paisley, an MP in Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), said in the debate today that the Protocol is a “nightmare for trade” due to the amount of bureaucracy involved, stating: “It is right and proper that the Government takes action this evening.”

Stormont – the Northern Ireland assembly – is not functioning right now because the DUP abstained at the election of the speaker due to the Protocol.

The DUP won the most seats in Northern Ireland in the 2019 general election with eight constituencies compared to Sinn Fein’s seven.

David Davis slaps down Justin Webb’s Brexit jibe [REACTION]
Fury at Rishi as Britain risks faster growth than Germany [INSIGHT]
‘Absolute rubbish’ Passengers rage as travel chaos blamed on Brexit [ANALYSIS]

How did MPs vote?

Members of Parliament have been debating the proposed changes in the House of Commons since 2.30pm today.

The Bill passed its first hurdle in Parliament with 295 votes to 221, a majority of 74, meaning it will progress to a second reading.

The UK’s relationship with the EU will become further strained as the Bill passed through Parliament today.

EU Ambassador to the UK, Joao Vale de Almeida, said on Sunday that the government’s plans are “illegal” in an indication the bloc will pursue its challenge.

In Northern Ireland, the passing of the Bill brings hope of a return to the assembly and governance in the country.

Source: Read Full Article