The completion of the European single market in 1992 (initiated by European Commissioner Lord Cockfield) and the Good Friday Agreement (negotiated by Irish-American Senator Mitchell) in 1998 were seen as possible to dismantle the previously extensive border infrastructure between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.  The Northern Ireland Protocol replaces the previous plan known as the Irish backstop, negotiated by former British Prime Minister Theresa May. In October 2019, UK and EU negotiators agreed on a revised protocol (see below) that resolved many of these issues by getting Northern Ireland to leave the EU de jure, but with a de facto border between the islands (Ireland and the UK). After the 2016 referendum, the Irish backstop was negotiated with the European Union by former Prime Minister Theresa May.
15 Oct 2021