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Cross-border co-operation on policing, security and criminal justice after Brexit

Inquiry

Brexit will change the UK’s policing, security and criminal justice arrangements with the Republic of Ireland. The basis for the UK and the Republic of Ireland’s close co-operation in these areas currently relies on agreements at an EU level, such as the use of the European Arrest Warrant and access to EU data and information-sharing arrangements.

When the transition period ends, the UK will lose access to many of the agreements on which such co-operation is based. If similar arrangements are not agreed between the UK and EU in the future relationship talks, this could pose significant challenges to maintaining the current high level of security and criminal justice co-operation between the UK and the Republic of Ireland.

The Committee has launched an inquiry to scrutinise how Brexit will affect cross-jurisdictional criminality between the UK and the Republic of Ireland and identify alternative mechanisms that may need to be established to facilitate effective long-term co-operation on policing, security and criminal justice after Brexit.

 

Terms of reference

The Northern Ireland Affairs Committee would welcome the submission of written evidence that addresses:

  • what effects Brexit will have on cross-jurisdictional criminality between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland,
  • what effects Brexit, and the new customs arrangements under the Northern Ireland Protocol, could have on criminality between the island of Ireland and Great Britain;
  • what new barriers will be created to cross-border security co-operation between the UK and the Republic of Ireland when the transition period ends, including if no deal on the UK-EU future relationship is agreed;
  • what steps need to be taken by the UK Government, in collaboration with the Irish Government, to replace any loss of access to the European Arrest Warrant as a tool for law enforcement co-operation between the UK and the Republic of Ireland in the context of:

(a) a future relationship deal agreed between the UK and EU that includes arrangements for security and judicial co-operation; or

(b) there being no deal agreed between the UK and EU before the transition period ends on 31 December 2020;

  • what steps the UK can take to replace any loss of access to existing EU data and information-sharing arrangements;
  • how Brexit will affect co-operation between the PSNI and Garda, as well as UK and Irish crime agencies, in tackling cross-border crime; and
  • what scope exists for the UK and the Republic of Ireland to pursue alternative approaches to policing, security and criminal justice co-operation outside the EU acquis.