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I think you're being overly optimistic about the prospect of a minimalistic agreement covering only Northern Ireland. It is much more likely that a hard Brexit scenario would not include any agreement at all. We should explore the implications of that, especially the obligations imposed by the Good Friday Agreement.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Jan 3rd, 2017 at 08:13:26 PM EST
Yes, that is a separate exercise that needs to be done. But in the closing months and weeks of the A.50 process there will be great pressure to come up with some kind of a face saving agreement. Something that creates some hope of being built on after Brexit and which shows that both sides weren't being entirely bloody minded.  But yes, it would be a stretch, but I wouldn't discount it.  The UK badly needs Ireland as an ally within the EU even if it can deliver little in the immediate A. 50 period.  It also needs a re-wind of the Troubles like a hole in the head. This is an area where UK, Irish and EU interests can intersect with relatively few implications for whatever else can or can not be agreed.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Jan 3rd, 2017 at 08:39:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I would see NI remaining in the EU as an option (the reverse solution had for Greenland). But dispensing the border with a state outside of the EU would be a major precedent. Not impossible, but a hard sell to the Council.

You might find me At The Edge Of Time.
by Luis de Sousa (luis[dot]a[dot]de[dot]sousa[at]gmail[dot]com) on Fri Jan 6th, 2017 at 02:09:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm only suggesting the Irish Government seek to have it retain - de facto - within the customs Union.  I agree, anything additional would be a stretch.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Fri Jan 6th, 2017 at 05:32:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Regarding NI and traffic between Ireland and Britain, I think they will cook up something that's legally total bullshit but will somehow work in practice. Something for the time being until it's tested in a crisis.

Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Wed Jan 4th, 2017 at 12:25:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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