UK Announces Plans to Scrap Parts of Northern Ireland Protocol

    Photo: AP Photo [via Al Jazeera]

    The Facts

    • On Tues., the UK government announced that it will pass a law to unilaterally change parts of a trade treaty, known as the Northern Ireland (NI) Protocol, agreed with the EU by Boris Johnson's government in 2020.

    • Foreign Secretary Liz Truss assured parliamentary colleagues that the plans to ease the movement of goods, apply UK tax law in NI, and increase Westminster's influence over laws in the nation wouldn't break international law.


    The Spin

    Right narrative

    UK political leaders remain open to negotiating with the EU to reach a solution, but the urgency prompted by the recent elections in NI means Westminster must take back control and sovereignty to protect economic rights.

    Left narrative

    Liz Truss' plan to rip up the NI protocol risks provoking an economically damaging trade war with the EU. The Conservative government put the stability of NI politics at risk with its original deal and now risks breaking international law to renege on the terms they agreed to just 18 months ago.

    Establishment-critical narrative

    The situation in NI isn't the problem, Brexit is. The stubbornness of Tory MPs who are faced with the spiraling issues surrounding Brexit protocol is understandable: accepting the EU's terms would mean admitting that exiting the single market was bad for UK businesses and surrendered Britain's power to influence EU policy.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 50% chance that the UK will apply to rejoin the EU by November 2049, according to the Metaculus prediction community.



    Political split

    LEFT

    RIGHT

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