Tag Archives: Brexit

So… What Could Brexit Really Mean for Scottish Independence?

October 31st: the scariest day of the year – and also Halloween.

Image result for brexit scotland

It’s apparent from the events of the last few years that no one is certain what will happen over the next few months and years in regards to Brexit.

Any consideration for a second Scottish independence referendum will depend on whether the UK leaves the EU, and if it does so, on what terms.

 

Leaving with a deal:

If the UK leaves the EU with a deal, Scotland could be in a position to argue that it’s unfair for us to leave the EU despite 2/3 of voters in Scotland voting to remain.

If Scotland became independent following this, this would give Scots the opportunity to decide if they wanted to join the EU again.

Leaving without a deal:

If the UK leaves without a deal, Scotland could be in the same position as above, but some people think the impacts on the economy and people’s everyday lives would be more significant, and so the argument for having a second independence referendum would be even stronger.

Calling off Brexit altogether:

If Brexit doesn’t happen at all, some people would argue there is less reason to have a second Scottish independence referendum, as Scotland as a nation voted to remain part of the UK in 2014, and would now no longer be leaving the EU against its will.

 

Depending on which of these scenarios actually happens on October 31st, the pros and cons of a second Scottish independence referendum would be different.

On one hand, no matter which outcome arises from Brexit, Scotland would have more choice over how it wants to be governed in the future.

On the other hand, not everyone in Scotland who voted to remain in the EU necessarily wants independence from the UK.

As well as this, the country is at risk of major divide due to the results of the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum and how this, along with the results of the 2016 EU referendum, will impact Scotland’s future.

It also could be difficult to ask a referendum question with a clear answer to whether Scotland should be independent from the UK but still part of the EU; would there instead be two referendums with separate questions?

Either way, whichever outcome we get on the 31st of October, lots of people are going to be unhappy, and the positives and negatives will vary based on personal opinion.

 

  • By Alison Kealy, Deputy Head editor

Chequers deal rejected in record breaking Commons defeat

See the source image

Brexit deal rejected by 432 MP’s, making it a historic defeat in Commons

At 19:00 on the 15th of January 2019 a vote was held to confirm whether or not the UK government backed the prime minister’s chequers deal, as widely forecasted the deal was rejected by MP’s.  This was a record defeat in commons history with 202 MP’s supporting the deal, and 432 MP’s standing firmly opposed, the idea behind the Prime Minister’s deal was to try and unite both Remainers and Leavers, it succeeded in this endeavour but in an adverse way, as it benefited absolutely no one.  With a landslide rejection Mr Corbyn has called for a government confidence vote, Mrs May won the party confidence vote in late 2018 in the promise that she would not stand again for election in the coming term, although in a situation such as this one many would’ve resigned as Prime Minister. The DUP (Democratic Unionist Party) has guaranteed May their vote, but if the government proves to have no confidence in Mrs May a general election will be held.

Updates to follow

  • By Lewis James McPartlin

No Deal Brexit

What is Brexit?  Who does it involve?

On the 29th of March 2019 the United Kingdom will separate from the European Union, after only having joined in 1973.  Now 45 years on, the British public have made the decision to sever ties with the EU; expectedly there are some issues which will inevitably arise: these are the expected challenges.  The first of which being the matter of the UK settling how much they owe the EU, the second being what happens to the border between the republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.  Yet another issue is what becomes of the British citizens living in the EU; and what happens to the European citizens in the UK.  Although the UK officially leave on the 29th of March 2019, the British government has put forward the idea that a 21-month transition period takes place in the hope that the finer details can be agreed upon.  Hopefully agreeing on nature of the relationship between the two states.  Finally a trade agreement has to be made in November of this year.

What is a No-deal Brexit?

A no-deal Brexit is the outcome which the government could reach if the necessary agreements are not met with the EU, causing a strained relationship between the UK and EU. This is very much the worst-case scenario for both parties as it would result in the UK not re-paying the EU, although  UK Prime Minister Theresa May has stated that a no-deal Brexit is preferable to the UK than a bad-deal Brexit.

When would it happen?

Brexit will take place at 11:00am on the 29th of March 2019; if the proposed 21-month transition period is agreed the extended time for negotiations would allow the minute details to be confirmed.  Meaning that the current relationship between the UK and the EU would remain uninfluenced, until the results  are implemented 1st of January 2020.

What would happen as a result?

Many Britons fear the prospect of a no-deal Brexit, but what are the repercussions of the UK leaving the EU without a deal?  The fact is that it is hard to tell what the result of the divorce of the EU will be, the government has been able to predict a few things though; it is looking increasingly likely that all credit card transactions between the UK/EU are likely to sky-rocket, the pound’s value is likely to nose-dive [whether this will be temporarily or for an extended period of time].  Borders may be backed up a result of customs checks, pharmaceutical companies are being advised to stockpile medicines, and businesses will have delayed access to their products.  British citizens residing in the EU, and European citizens living UK, could lose access to their pensions. Finally, the UK will have to put its own new revised nuclear safeguards in place

This could  all be as the  pro-brexiteers say that it is scare mongering, and if a deal is made very little could change or the same could come into effect because of a hard Brexit.

Is it a good thing or a bad thing?

The question everyone has been asking since day one is whether Brexit will benefit the UK or not.  Predictably the least assuring answer is also the simplest: no one really knows, there are many factors which are in favour of either side but for many it is merely down to your own personal circumstances so unfortunately there is no definite answer.

  • Lewis McPartlin, Reporter
  • Sources: BBC news

World News of the Summer

A round-up of the big news this summer.
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Fifa World Cup Russia 2018

On Sunday 15th July France won the Fifa World Cup for the second time, beating Croatia 4-2 in the final held in Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.  France’s triumph made their manager Didier Deschamps only the 3rd man to win the international competition as both a player and coach. Huge celebrations took place in France following the team’s win, with thousands of supporters welcoming them back as the players paraded down the Champs Elysees in Paris on Monday. Similar events took place 20 years prior when Didier Deschamps took victory in the world cup as the French captain.

Despite losing to France in the final, Croatia were proud to come as far as they did and had some celebrations of their own as the runners-up returned to Zagreb.

               Fans react in Zagreb after Croatia’s 4-2 defeat to France in the World Cup final.              Image result for world cup croatia celebrations
Ethiopia and Eritrea make peace

Despite the peace agreement made in 2000, two years after the war between Ethiopia and Eritrea began, the two countries have been in a state of “no war, no peace” for almost two decades. The war began due to conflict over their border, when the initial peace agreement was made it was decided that the town of Badame was on the Eritrean side of the border but Ethiopia refused to accept this.

When Abiy Ahmed took over as Prime Minister of Ethiopia, just 3 months ago, people suspected that this could lead to things changing however few expected it to happen so quickly.  The declaration was signed by the leaders of both countries when Abiy Ahmed visited Eritrea’s capital, Asmara. This summit between Ethiopia’s Prime Minister and Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki was the first time the leaders of the two nations had met for almost 20 years. Families who have been separated by the border conflict are also now able to reunite as telephone and transport links have been re-established. The first flight from Ethiopia to Eritrea since the war, took off on July 18th with  passengers travelling to the Eritrean capital to reconnect with family and friends on the other side of the border.

Fitsum Arega, the Prime Minister of Ethiopia’s chief of staff tweeted following the summit:

UN Agree First Ever Global Compact on Migration

The United Nations’ Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration   was finalised on July 13th with almost unanimous support from the UN Member States.

Miroslav Lajčák the President of the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly spoke about the benefits of the compact saying:

“It can guide us from a reactive to a proactive mode. It can help us to draw out the benefits of migration, and mitigate the risks. It can provide a new platform for cooperation. And it can be a resource, in finding the right balance between the rights of people and the sovereignty of States. And, in December, it will formally become the first comprehensive framework on migration the world has ever seen.”

The Intergovernmental Conference to Adopt the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration held in Marrakesh, Morocco on the 10th and 11th of December will mark the official agreement to the compact from the UN Member States.

Brexit

Brexit has taken a turn for the worst over the summer of 2018, crashing and burning into a heap of ashes that no-one’s quite sure ever really was, or what it could ever possibly be again. In early June, just weeks before the EU summit, politicians still had no workable ideas to fix the ever-looming problem of the Irish border and customs union, and on top of that the Conservatives struggled to contain their own internalised rebellion – however backbencher Tories began eventually laying off the criticism of Theresa May mid-June. Although, that doesn’t necessarily mean things got any better for May, which can be assumed by the immense number of panicked meetings she began holding with her cabinet nearing the tail-end of June as well as the fact the public were now rallying in the streets of London for the right to vote on how they wanted the deal to go. Things then continued to go even further south for the Tory government at the commencement of July, when the Brexit Secretary decided to hand in an abrupt resignation damaging an already fragile situation further.

As the whole Brexit debacle continues to unfold, it is becoming less and less clear what it’s actually about and just how our politicians should be handling it – although they definitely should be dealing with it better than they have been over the summer. More to follow on this specific subject this week.

  • By Erin Seils, Editor of World and Science (Brexit Summary by Rachael Smith Editor of World and Politics)
  • Sources: BBC News, CNN, The Guardian, UN Foundation

 

The Idiot’s (sorry!) Guide To Brexit

Grace Rowling

Brexit is a term made up by a journalist in 2012 to shorten the phrase ‘Britain’s exit from the European union’. Brexit is the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union (EU).

Continue reading The Idiot’s (sorry!) Guide To Brexit

Anti Brexit Marches Descend Upon London

Rio Jordan | Reporter

Around 20,000 people gathered in London for an anti-Brexit protest on Sunday. It appears to be a sort of ‘last stand’ before the government takes the first big step towards separating UK and EU laws.

Continue reading Anti Brexit Marches Descend Upon London

Brexit – Breaking Through the Bluster

Eleanor Service |

Brexit. By now I’m sure you’re all well aware of what Brexit is, and that it is a source of great uncertainty for Britain and its future. Yes, it is a hugely important decision, an historical one even, but headlines have been so saturated by the topic for so long, that many people, myself included, have rather lost interest. Amidst so much confusion, conflicting stories and charismatic manipulations from skillful politicians on both sides, the facts of the matter become murky. And so, I have decided to delve deeper into the matter, and try to create a comprehensive, and simple guide to Brexit.

If we are to truly start at the beginning, we must move further back than June 23rd 2016, the fateful day of the EU Referendum that altered Britain’s political landscape forever, and instead start in 1975. This, was the last time British voters had a voice in our European relations, when Britain voted to stay in what was then known as the European Economic Community. But, of course, in the coming years things didn’t stay the same.

From the moment the 1992 Maastricht Treaty, which created the modern EU, was signed, there have been many clamoring for a vote that considered how different things now are. Those opposing the EU as a construct claimed that being part of the EU gave an unnacceptable level of power to Brussels. The controversial topic even caused divide within the Conservative Party itself.

But fast forward twenty years and, thanks to the long economic boom, up until the financial crash in 2008, the issue had been ignored. But alas, the issue eventually returned, despite David Cameron’s best efforts during his 2010 election to focus on domestic issues.

A long string of political events followed, bringing the issue back to the forefront, particularly the influx of immigrants in the early 2000s. These were originally welcomed, but after the 2008 financial crash, living standards fell and resentment built. The public began to complain that no political party was responding quickly or efficiently enough. A period of political unrest ensued, spearheaded by Ukip’s surge in popularity.

Ukip’s success lead many Tory MPs to worry that Ukip would take enough seats to ensure Labour victory, and demanded that Cameron give them something to defend themselves with. That something was the EU Referendum.

Despite his reservations, Cameron agreed to hold the EU referendum by the end of 2017, but, due to drastic changes in circumstance, he was eventually driven to holding an early election. All in an effort to try and reduce the referendum’s hold on the political agenda. That backfired spectacularly, the issue has had a stranglehold on the nation’s attention for years.

Fast forward a couple of years, and results day has arrived. The leave vote has won with 51.9%, and Cameron suddenly announces his resignation as Prime Minister. The nation is shocked, and speculation is rife around who will lead next. What will this mean for Brexit? Will they try to stop it? Will they try to speed the process up? The nation’s answer is given with the announcement of the next PM of Britain, Theresa May.

So, where does our new PM stand on Brexit?

Initially. May was against Brexit, being of the opinion that we were better off in the EU. However, over the length of her term, her opinion has changed and she now favours leaving, saying it’s what the people want. And so, on the 29th of March, she began the two year long process of leaving the EU, with talks finally starting on the 19th of June.

For one week every month, the UK and EU negotiating teams are scheduled to meet to discuss the terms of Britain leaving the EU. Up first are the issues of the rights of EU and UK citizens after Brexit, what happens to the Northern Ireland Border and coming to a conclusion on how much it will cost the UK upon their leaving.

This is Brexit’s story so far, but there is still so much more to be established, and the people of Britain have been left uncertain about their fate. As the talks progress, we will keep you updated on the developments and consequences of the Brexit negotiations. But one thing remains certain, Britain will never be the same again.