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Two Years Later: A Look at Brexit Negotiations

Aug 22, 2019

By Zarifa Huq

BRUSSELS – October 31st spells the new British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s hard deadline to leave the European Union. After nearly 2 months of no movement in talks of a trade backstop along the Irish border, Johnson’s camp has resolved only to participate in EU meetings that, “really matter.”

The demands of the Johnson administration would form a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland as opposed to the EU’s desire to have a backstop that is closely aligned with EU customs unions so trade and travel are not hindered.

Though it’s been 2 years since Theresa May’s administration negotiated a legal withdrawal agreement with the EU, a negotiation does not end at acceptance. As evidenced by the ongoing Brexit situation, even after an agreement occurs (such as the public voting to Brexit) negotiations continue long afterwards into the implementation phase. Execution of a decision is often as long, nuanced, and complex negotiation process as the negotiations that occurred prior to an agreement in the first place.

The U.K. is not only having to negotiate how they will leave the union but how to deal with the effects of leaving. Leaked documents showed the British government is preparing for “widespread shortages of food, fuel, and medicines in the event of a no-deal Brexit.”

With criticism from Britain’s opposition party and more proposals being dismissed by British lawmakers due to the Irish border issue, it remains to be seen what will happen once October 31st arrives.


Read the full article from the LA Times here.