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Pushing back against the latest ruling on citizenship in the North October 15, 2019

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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Good to read that Simon Coveney is to…

…press the British government to review domestic laws on citizenship in Northern Ireland after a UK court ruled that people born in the region are legally British citizens even if they identify as Irish.

Simon Coveney, the Irish foreign affairs minister, said he would raise the case of Emma DeSouza with the Northern Ireland secretary on Tuesday. He is concerned that British law is not “consistent” with the unique rights enshrined in the Good Friday agreement peace deal that allow anyone born in Northern Ireland to be Irish, British or both.

At a minimum this raises significant questions as to the implementation by the UK of both the spirit and the letter of the GFA/BA in legislation. And as the Guardian notes, the ROI amended our legislation in respect of these matters, so it is telling that the UK did not do the same.

Another positive aspect of this is the fact De Souza is committed to fighting on. This is a core area of any agreed dispensation on this island.

Comments»

1. An Sionnach Fionn - October 15, 2019

It’s a dire situation and there doesn’t seem to be much hope that an appeal to the UK Supreme Court will fare any better. As far as the UK judiciary is concerned, domestic UK legislation trumps any and all international agreements or treaties. Which, strictly speaking, is legally sound as far the UK way of doing things is concerned. Which of course London knew full well, which is why the nationality legislation was framed the way it was.

The big surprise is the willingness of the Home Office to make all this explicit by challenging the previous tribunal judgement that went against them. There is a strong suspicion that the UK will decline to incorporate the GFA birth-right clauses into law. Or put the changes on the forever long-finger. Which, again strictly speaking, is a violation of international law as it relates to the GFA. But would Dublin be prepared to challenge that?

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WorldbyStorm - October 15, 2019

They should, and it should be used as a standard of their good faith in this.

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EWI - October 15, 2019

As far as the UK judiciary is concerned, domestic UK legislation trumps any and all international agreements or treaties. Which, strictly speaking, is legally sound as far the UK way of doing things is concerned.

This is exactly the problem.

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Tomboktu - October 15, 2019

In fairness, as far as Ireland is concerned, domestic Irish legislation trumps any and all international agreements or treaties. Which, strictly speaking, is legally sound as far as the Irish way of doing things is concerned.

(It’s why we have those referendums about EU treaties – to make them part of our doemstic law.)

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EWI - October 16, 2019

I don’t disagree, but we’ve held scrupulously to both the letter and spirit of the GFA. The UK has done neither.

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taf - October 16, 2019

I don’t think it’s a case of trumping. The mechanism throughout the EU is that constituent nations have to pass domestic legislation and put structures in place to implement EU agreements. That I believe is that case for all member nations.

Legally I thought that the ECJ and ECHR do trump Irish law in a number of areas, and domestic legislation can be found contrary to treaties by those bodies. Certainly that’s often the case with German domestic legislation.

That’s the cost of being part of the ‘EU Empire’ with its serried ranks of panzer divisions currently poised to annex the north or Ireland 😉

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2. polly - October 16, 2019

Here is what doesn’t make sense to me. If what the Home Office wanted was to limit people bringing in non-EU spouses in reliance on EU treaty / Citizenship Directive rights, they could have concentrated on arguing the good EU law argument that family unification rights derived from free movement rights only benefit people who move between Member States, i.e. you can’t sit at home in the parish you were born in and invoke them. Either Mz de Sousa moved around or she didn’t, and all the rest of the argument was moot.

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3. Alibaba - October 16, 2019

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