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EU developments in Equality and Human Rights: Impact of Brexit on the divergence of rights and best practice on the island of Ireland

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Colin MurrayORCiD, Clare Rice



This is the final published version of a report that has been published in its final definitive form by Equality Commission for Northern Ireland, 2023.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Article 2 of the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, contained within the Withdrawal Agreement concluded between the United Kingdom and the European Union, outlines a commitment to non-diminution of rights in Northern Ireland post Brexit. This commitment is underpinned by the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement 1998 and its provisions on Rights, Safeguards and Equality of Opportunity, which saw these elements as integral to creating the necessary conditions for facilitating peace in Northern Ireland in the wake of conflict. That the United Kingdom and European Union constructed Article 2 on this basis is reflective of the emphasis that was placed on the 1998 Agreement in the Brexit negotiations and assertions that the Agreement must be upheld in any deal between the two sides. The expansive yet ambiguous framing of the 1998 provisions, while politically sufficient at the time of agreement, have acquired a legal significance in the wake of Brexit. Article 2 represents a reaffirmation of commitment to the 1998 provisions, while simultaneously demanding clarity in the relationship between domestic and European Union law, and obligating an ongoing monitoring process of this post-Brexit.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Craig S, Deb A, Frantziou E, Horne A, Murray C, Rice C, Rooney J

Publication type: Report

Publication status: Published

Series Title:

Year: 2023

Pages: 140

Print publication date: 12/04/2023

Online publication date: 12/04/2023

Acceptance date: 31/12/2022

Institution: Equality Commission for Northern Ireland

Place Published: Belfast Northern Ireland


ePrints DOI: 10.57711/3vmc-ya27