Democrat politician and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has warned the UK that there will be no beneficial trade relationship formed with the United States should the final Brexit deal, or possible lack of a deal, harm Northern Ireland’s Good Friday Agreement.
The widely influential politician spoke at the London School of Economics and Political Science’s “In-Conversation” series, where the University invites powerful contenders in world politics to speak to a public audience.
Representative Pelosi, who spoke to Professor Peter Trubowitz, stated that the tenuous peace agreements made in Northern Ireland can not be “bargained away” during conversations with the European Union, mentioning concerns over the possible creation of a customs “back-stop” in Northern Ireland, should a hard-border not be formed between the Republic of Ireland.
The Good Friday Agreement was a political policy formed in the 1990s, which saw an end to several decades of intense fighting and unrest in the Northern Irish and Irish border between dissidents, and UK Government forces, culminating in a number of terrorist attacks committed by the Irish Republican Army, a long with several atrocities committed by UK troops and Government-allied paramilitary groups.
Tensions in the region have recently heated up once again as a direct result of Brexit, as it is thought a new iteration of Republican armed groups have begun threatening UK infrastructure and citizens with acts of terror.
The current Speaker of the House also remarked that regardless of whether Northern Ireland’s peace was jeopardised by the Brexit process, successfully putting a trade deal through Congress is still “no given anyway”, but the Good Friday Agreement was something the United States wouldn’t want to be “something that can be bargained away in some other agreement” as the creation of the agreement as a “model to the world”.
The Speaker also stated how Brexit has become such an integral issue to world politics, it overshadows most other economic transatlantic talks between other countries and the United States. Pelosi mentioned her discontent with any political trip to the UK simply involving “Brexit, Brexit, Brexit, Brexit”.