The Good Friday Agreement, also known as the Belfast Agreement, was a historic peace treaty signed in 1998 between the British and Irish governments and various political parties in Northern Ireland. The agreement brought an end to decades of violence between Catholics and Protestants in the region, and established power-sharing arrangements in the Northern Irish government.
However, the impending “hard Brexit” could potentially threaten the Good Friday Agreement. A hard Brexit refers to the United Kingdom leaving the European Union without a comprehensive deal in place regarding trade and other issues. If this were to happen, it could potentially lead to a reinstatement of border controls between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, which could threaten the delicate peace established by the Good Friday Agreement.
The Good Friday Agreement relies on an open border between the two countries, allowing for the free movement of people and goods. If border controls were to be reimplemented, it could lead to significant economic disruption and increase tensions between the two communities. It could also potentially reignite sectarian violence in the region.
Furthermore, the Good Friday Agreement also guarantees that the people of Northern Ireland have the right to identify as either British or Irish, or both. A hard Brexit could potentially violate this right, as it would remove Northern Ireland from the EU and its protections.
In conclusion, a hard Brexit could potentially have disastrous consequences for the Good Friday Agreement and the people of Northern Ireland. It is crucial that all parties involved work to ensure that the peace established by the agreement is not threatened by the UK`s decision to leave the EU.