What Happens If the Good Friday Agreement Is Broken
The British Government is virtually out of the equation, and neither the British Parliament nor the British people have the legal right under this agreement to impede the achievement of Irish unity if it had the consent of the peoples of the North and the South. Our nation is and always will be a nation with 32 counties. Antrim and Down are and will remain as much a part of Ireland as any other county in the south.  Northern Ireland has managed to stay out of the front pages in recent decades, with the conflict over sovereignty and religion being modified by the 1998 „Good Friday Agreement.” In addition to opening the border, this agreement restored a certain degree of local autonomy and power-sharing between Republican and Unionist politicians. The old text contains only four articles; It is this short text that is the legal agreement, but it contains in its annexes the latter agreement.  Technically, this envisaged agreement can be distinguished as a multi-party agreement as opposed to the Belfast Agreement itself.  „This type of operational measure is well anticipated and customary in other international trade agreements and is fully consistent with our intention to fulfill our obligations under the Protocol in good faith,” he said. Under that agreement, the British and Irish Governments undertook to hold referendums in Northern Ireland and the Republic on 22 May 1998 respectively. The referendum in Northern Ireland was aimed at approving the agreement reached during the multi-party negotiations. The referendum in the Republic of Ireland was aimed at approving the BRITANNICO-Irish Agreement and facilitating the amendment of the Constitution of Ireland in accordance with the Agreement. The main issues left out by Sunningdale and addressed in the Belfast Agreement are the principle of self-determination, the recognition of both national identities, British-Irish intergovernmental cooperation and legal procedures to make power-sharing compulsory, such as inter-community voting and the D`Hondt system for appointing ministers to the executive.
  Former IRA member and journalist Tommy McKearney says the main difference is the British government`s intention to negotiate a comprehensive deal involving the IRA and the most intransigent trade unionists.  With respect to the right to self-determination, two limitations are noted by legal writer Austen Morgan. Firstly, the transfer of territory from one State to another must be done through international agreements between the British and Irish Governments. Secondly, the people of Northern Ireland can no longer achieve a united Ireland alone; they need not only the Irish Government, but also the people of their Irish neighbour to support unity. Morgan also pointed out that, unlike the Ireland Act 1949 and the Northern Ireland Constitution Act 1973, which were drafted under Sunningdale, the 1998 Agreement and the resulting UK legislation expressly provided for the possibility of a united Ireland.  As part of the agreement, it was proposed to build on the existing British-Irish interparliamentary body. Prior to the agreement, the body consisted solely of parliamentarians from the British and Irish parliaments. In 2001, as proposed in the agreement, it was extended to parliamentarians from all members of the British-Irish Council.
„If you or the EU are not willing to abide by the entire (Good Friday) agreement, then you will be responsible for the permanent destruction of the agreement,” paramilitary adviser Johnson said in a letter. Northern Ireland`s political parties in favour of the agreement were also invited to consider the establishment of an independent civil society advisory forum composed of members with expertise in the social, cultural, economic and other fields, appointed by both governments. A framework for the North-South Consultation Forum was agreed in 2002 and in 2006 the Northern Ireland Executive agreed that it would support its establishment. The agreement reached was that Northern Ireland was and would remain a part of the United Kingdom until a majority of the population of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland wanted something else. If this happens, the UK and Irish governments will have a „binding obligation” to implement this decision. The agreement reaffirms the commitment to „mutual respect, civil rights and religious freedoms of all members of the community.” The multi-party agreement recognised „the importance of respect, understanding and tolerance with regard to linguistic diversity”, in particular with regard to the Irish language, Ulster Scots and the languages of other ethnic minorities in Northern Ireland, „all of which are part of the cultural richness of the island of Ireland”. The logic was quite simple. As long as the UK and Ireland were in the same EU club, the line between them could be blurred, allowing northerners to identify as British or Irish or both without much friction. It is on this basis that the Good Friday Agreement, signed 23 years ago tomorrow, was built – a foundation that would be broken if one of the two countries in Brussels were to break. Taken together, these are the life-and-death arguments for Britain`s continued membership of the EU, and some have courageously tried to do so. But they were barely heard.
The UK is required by law to ensure that goods entering Northern Ireland from the UK are inspected, according to Jess Sargeant of the Institute for Government think tank. This week`s violence is a worrying sign that leaving the EU has been a wrecking ball for the Good Friday agreement, and there are also more immediate causes. Last month`s decision not to prosecute Sinn FÃin officials© who had violated Covid restrictions in order to attend the mass funeral of a senior IRA commander sounded a double standard that favoured republicans and, therefore, given the zero-sum mentality that persists in places of conflict, automatically harmed the loyalists. On top of that, with the Easter weekend, the arrival of longer „sleepless night” evenings, children who were bored of the lockdown and easily stimulated by loyalist gang leaders, many of whom looked like local mafia leaders in organized crime, and the tinder was dry. The Belfast Agreement is also known as the Good Friday Agreement because it was concluded on Good Friday, April 10, 1998. It was an agreement between the British and Irish governments and most of Northern Ireland`s political parties on how Northern Ireland should be governed. The talks that led to the agreement focused on issues that had led to conflicts in recent decades. The aim was to create a new decentralised government for Northern Ireland in which unionists and nationalists would share power.
The result of these referendums was a large majority in both parts of Ireland in favour of the agreement. In the republic, 56% of voters voted, with 94% of the vote in favour of the constitutional amendment. Turnout in Northern Ireland was 81%, with 71% in favour of the deal. The vague wording of some of the provisions, described as „constructive ambiguity”, helped to ensure acceptance of the agreement and postponed debate on some of the most contentious issues. These include paramilitary dismantling, police reform and the standardisation of Northern Ireland. In 2004, negotiations took place between the two governments, the DUP and Sinn Féin on an agreement to restore the institutions. These talks failed, but a document published by governments detailing changes to the Belfast Agreement became known as the „Global Agreement”. However, on 26 September 2005, it was announced that the Provisional Irish Republican Army had completely decommissioned and „decommissioned” its arsenal. Nevertheless, many trade unionists, especially the DUP, remained sceptical. Of the loyalist paramilitaries, only the Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF) had decommissioned weapons.  Further negotiations took place in October 2006 for the St Andrews Agreement. German MEP Bernd Lange, chairman of the European Parliament`s trade committee, said on Twitter that Brussels lawmakers would reject the deal if the Brexit divorce deal was broken.
I expect unionist protests to dissipate as the economic benefits of EU trade become clearer. In the meantime, Johnson`s government should stop playing with fire. Withdrawal from the protocol could dissolve the Good Friday Agreement. Not only would this jeopardise the possibility of future trade deals with the UK, but it could also reignite religious conflicts in Northern Ireland. That would be a high price. The agreement provided for the establishment of an independent commission to review police regulation in Northern Ireland, „including ways to promote broad community support” for these arrangements. The UK government has also committed to a „comprehensive review” of the criminal justice system in Northern Ireland. The agreement was approved by voters across the island of Ireland in two referendums on 22 May 1998. In Northern Ireland, in the 1998 referendum on the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland, voters were asked if they supported the multi-party agreement. In the Republic of Ireland, voters were asked whether they would allow the state to sign the agreement and allow the necessary constitutional amendments (Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution of Ireland) to facilitate it. .