Author Topic: You're All British in the North Now!!  (Read 6607 times)

Fionntamhnach

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2918
  • "Hey Lawrence..."
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #30 on: October 15, 2019, 01:57:18 PM »
just for clarity, people on here seem to think the GFA stops at saying we can idientofy as British, Irish or both so here is the actual wording

Quote
recognise the birthright of all the people of Northern Ireland to
identify themselves and be accepted as Irish or British, or both, as they
may so choose, and accordingly confirm that their right to hold both
British and Irish citizenship is accepted by both Governments and would
not be affected by any future change in the status of Northern Ireland.

That wording suggests that all born in NI have the right to positively identify as Irish and/or British, but not the right to negatively identify. And again it comes down to "identify". BIB is where De Souza's argument lies in that it should be possible for the application of her husband to settle in NI for her to list herself as Irish. UK Home Office is of the opinion that anyone whom in a British Citizen must prioritise themselves as such in this regard. European Court of Human Rights, here we come, I reckon.
Signature is in quarantine...

johnnycool

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1706
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #31 on: October 15, 2019, 02:00:41 PM »
just for clarity, people on here seem to think the GFA stops at saying we can idientofy as British, Irish or both so here is the actual wording

Quote
recognise the birthright of all the people of Northern Ireland to
identify themselves and be accepted as Irish or British, or both, as they
may so choose, and accordingly confirm that their right to hold both
British and Irish citizenship is accepted by both Governments and would
not be affected by any future change in the status of Northern Ireland.

So, not only can you identify as Irish you are also entitled to Irish citizenship.

Is that not contrary to the De Souza outcomes yesterday?

screenexile

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11229
  • Up The Screen!
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #32 on: October 15, 2019, 02:17:28 PM »
just for clarity, people on here seem to think the GFA stops at saying we can idientofy as British, Irish or both so here is the actual wording

Quote
recognise the birthright of all the people of Northern Ireland to
identify themselves and be accepted as Irish or British, or both, as they
may so choose, and accordingly confirm that their right to hold both
British and Irish citizenship is accepted by both Governments and would
not be affected by any future change in the status of Northern Ireland.

So, not only can you identify as Irish you are also entitled to Irish citizenship.

Is that not contrary to the De Souza outcomes yesterday?

No... De Souza is trying to say that she only has Irish Citizenship when this is not the case.

According too the law being born in the North means you're automatically a British citizen until you denounce it!


Fionntamhnach

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2918
  • "Hey Lawrence..."
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #33 on: October 15, 2019, 02:40:11 PM »
This case reaffirms to me that we were all duped by the GFA.

Yes the last 25 years of peace have really fucked me off!!  ::) ::)

And if the GFA or anything similar to it never existed, Mrs. De Souza would still be regarded as a full British Citizen by the UK anyway, so it's a moot point here. I'm also seeing some historical revision - I don't recall any mention by anyone at wishing to have negative identity legally enshrined back in 1997/98 when discussions were ongoing, or when the agreement was signed, or when it was being put to a referendum to be ratified. Positive identity most certainly, but not negative. But sure, it's easy to blame the Brits or the Shinners etc. of the time.

Just to add, although I'm sure they're well aware of this but if the De Souza's have any children together in future they will automatically acquire US citizenship through their father. Obviously the GFA doesn't come into this, but the US Government will regard them as US citizens even if neither the child or both their parents chose to identify themselves as such. In that sense, they would be legally required to enter or leave the USA with an American passport while as adults they are also subject to US taxation laws etc. as I mentioned earlier. They can renounce it, but it's not that easy (or cheap) to do...

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal/travel-legal-considerations/us-citizenship/Renunciation-US-Nationality-Abroad.html

Essentially, you can only give your renunciation in person at a US Embassy or Consulate, signing your renunciation is irrevocable and once confirmed and approved essentially means that to visit the USA in the future, you'll be treated as any other foreigner whom never held US citizenship in the first place - but that does not stop you from (in their eyes) fulfilling your tax, financial or military obligations under US law. Also, there is a fee for renouncing your American citizenship. I don't have a figure for 2019, but the most recent fee I've seen is an eye-watering US$2350! And you thought the fee to renounce British citizenship was bad.  :o
Signature is in quarantine...

David McKeown

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2299
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #34 on: October 15, 2019, 03:03:46 PM »
This case reaffirms to me that we were all duped by the GFA.

Yes the last 25 years of peace have really fucked me off!!  ::) ::)

And if the GFA or anything similar to it never existed, Mrs. De Souza would still be regarded as a full British Citizen by the UK anyway, so it's a moot point here. I'm also seeing some historical revision - I don't recall any mention by anyone at wishing to have negative identity legally enshrined back in 1997/98 when discussions were ongoing, or when the agreement was signed, or when it was being put to a referendum to be ratified. Positive identity most certainly, but not negative. But sure, it's easy to blame the Brits or the Shinners etc. of the time.

Just to add, although I'm sure they're well aware of this but if the De Souza's have any children together in future they will automatically acquire US citizenship through their father. Obviously the GFA doesn't come into this, but the US Government will regard them as US citizens even if neither the child or both their parents chose to identify themselves as such. In that sense, they would be legally required to enter or leave the USA with an American passport while as adults they are also subject to US taxation laws etc. as I mentioned earlier. They can renounce it, but it's not that easy (or cheap) to do...

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal/travel-legal-considerations/us-citizenship/Renunciation-US-Nationality-Abroad.html

Essentially, you can only give your renunciation in person at a US Embassy or Consulate, signing your renunciation is irrevocable and once confirmed and approved essentially means that to visit the USA in the future, you'll be treated as any other foreigner whom never held US citizenship in the first place - but that does not stop you from (in their eyes) fulfilling your tax, financial or military obligations under US law. Also, there is a fee for renouncing your American citizenship. I don't have a figure for 2019, but the most recent fee I've seen is an eye-watering US$2350! And you thought the fee to renounce British citizenship was bad.  :o

I think thatís exactly the point. The GFA made zero impact on the UKís views regarding those born in Northern Ireland and wishing to identify as Irish. That in turn begs the question if that is the case then why was it included in the GFA in the first place? If we assume that all parties intend to give effect to all parts of the treaties they sign up to (basic rules of statutory interpretation) then to me it would appear that the UK are breach of their international obligations under the GFA as they failed to do anything in domestic law to give effect to what they signed up for.

omaghjoe

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3833
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #35 on: October 15, 2019, 03:26:33 PM »
Britain - Union between England and Wales
Great Britain - Union between England Wales and Scotland

UK - GB & 6 counties
Free State - demilitrised zone for quislings

This is typical of the general public's rationale to understand the terminology of the jurisdiction of these islands

Fionntamhnach

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2918
  • "Hey Lawrence..."
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #36 on: October 15, 2019, 05:37:48 PM »
This case reaffirms to me that we were all duped by the GFA.

Yes the last 25 years of peace have really fucked me off!!  ::) ::)

And if the GFA or anything similar to it never existed, Mrs. De Souza would still be regarded as a full British Citizen by the UK anyway, so it's a moot point here. I'm also seeing some historical revision - I don't recall any mention by anyone at wishing to have negative identity legally enshrined back in 1997/98 when discussions were ongoing, or when the agreement was signed, or when it was being put to a referendum to be ratified. Positive identity most certainly, but not negative. But sure, it's easy to blame the Brits or the Shinners etc. of the time.

Just to add, although I'm sure they're well aware of this but if the De Souza's have any children together in future they will automatically acquire US citizenship through their father. Obviously the GFA doesn't come into this, but the US Government will regard them as US citizens even if neither the child or both their parents chose to identify themselves as such. In that sense, they would be legally required to enter or leave the USA with an American passport while as adults they are also subject to US taxation laws etc. as I mentioned earlier. They can renounce it, but it's not that easy (or cheap) to do...

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal/travel-legal-considerations/us-citizenship/Renunciation-US-Nationality-Abroad.html

Essentially, you can only give your renunciation in person at a US Embassy or Consulate, signing your renunciation is irrevocable and once confirmed and approved essentially means that to visit the USA in the future, you'll be treated as any other foreigner whom never held US citizenship in the first place - but that does not stop you from (in their eyes) fulfilling your tax, financial or military obligations under US law. Also, there is a fee for renouncing your American citizenship. I don't have a figure for 2019, but the most recent fee I've seen is an eye-watering US$2350! And you thought the fee to renounce British citizenship was bad.  :o

I think thatís exactly the point. The GFA made zero impact on the UKís views regarding those born in Northern Ireland and wishing to identify as Irish. That in turn begs the question if that is the case then why was it included in the GFA in the first place? If we assume that all parties intend to give effect to all parts of the treaties they sign up to (basic rules of statutory interpretation) then to me it would appear that the UK are breach of their international obligations under the GFA as they failed to do anything in domestic law to give effect to what they signed up for.

From the point of view you're presenting, the problem is that to solve that issue is not that simple. As I've already mentioned, most whom are born in NI are automatically granted UK citizenship and like pretty much every such country that does the same, you cannot passively renounce it. If UK nationality law was changed in NI to where being born there no longer granted automatic British citizenship at birth, but gave formal rights when actively applied for as is the case presently regarding Irish citizenship for those born in NI, this leaves us with a situation where most babies in NI are born stateless due to a lack of jus soli. That in itself throws up a fair few potential problems especially if there are questions concerning parentage, a baby born in NI to non-Irish or UK citizens whose parents own citizenship either doesn't allow or restricts jus sanguinis, parents refusing or just not bothering to formally apply for any nationality the child can receive etc. Even then, some born in NI may be entitled to automatic citizenship (though not Irish or British) of a country that doesn't recognise multiple citizenship and that trying to register British citizenship whilst already holding citizenship of another country has additional stringent checks in place that does not apply when citizenship is already granted at birth.

It's also worth remembering that since the GFA came into effect, Ireland itself has changed its rights to acquiring citizenship through jos soli after several incidents came to light of certain women deliberately coming to NI to give birth so their child could acquire an EU citizenship meaning both of them would be far harder to deport out of another EU country, as well as foreign nationals holding no Irish citizenship giving birth in the state and later being able to prevent themselves being deported, referencing a Supreme Court ruling from 1989 that forbade the deporting of a parent of an Irish citizen. This right was originally enshrined in the passing of the 19th amendment to the constitution that was tied to the rights of Irish citizenship stated in the GFA, and was later changed with the 27th amendment. Like it or not, immigration concerns are what drove the 27th amendment to pass after the loopholes of the idealism of the 19th amendment were being taken advantage of.
Signature is in quarantine...

David McKeown

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2299
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #37 on: October 15, 2019, 07:41:50 PM »
This case reaffirms to me that we were all duped by the GFA.

Yes the last 25 years of peace have really fucked me off!!  ::) ::)

And if the GFA or anything similar to it never existed, Mrs. De Souza would still be regarded as a full British Citizen by the UK anyway, so it's a moot point here. I'm also seeing some historical revision - I don't recall any mention by anyone at wishing to have negative identity legally enshrined back in 1997/98 when discussions were ongoing, or when the agreement was signed, or when it was being put to a referendum to be ratified. Positive identity most certainly, but not negative. But sure, it's easy to blame the Brits or the Shinners etc. of the time.

Just to add, although I'm sure they're well aware of this but if the De Souza's have any children together in future they will automatically acquire US citizenship through their father. Obviously the GFA doesn't come into this, but the US Government will regard them as US citizens even if neither the child or both their parents chose to identify themselves as such. In that sense, they would be legally required to enter or leave the USA with an American passport while as adults they are also subject to US taxation laws etc. as I mentioned earlier. They can renounce it, but it's not that easy (or cheap) to do...

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/legal/travel-legal-considerations/us-citizenship/Renunciation-US-Nationality-Abroad.html

Essentially, you can only give your renunciation in person at a US Embassy or Consulate, signing your renunciation is irrevocable and once confirmed and approved essentially means that to visit the USA in the future, you'll be treated as any other foreigner whom never held US citizenship in the first place - but that does not stop you from (in their eyes) fulfilling your tax, financial or military obligations under US law. Also, there is a fee for renouncing your American citizenship. I don't have a figure for 2019, but the most recent fee I've seen is an eye-watering US$2350! And you thought the fee to renounce British citizenship was bad.  :o

I think thatís exactly the point. The GFA made zero impact on the UKís views regarding those born in Northern Ireland and wishing to identify as Irish. That in turn begs the question if that is the case then why was it included in the GFA in the first place? If we assume that all parties intend to give effect to all parts of the treaties they sign up to (basic rules of statutory interpretation) then to me it would appear that the UK are breach of their international obligations under the GFA as they failed to do anything in domestic law to give effect to what they signed up for.

From the point of view you're presenting, the problem is that to solve that issue is not that simple. As I've already mentioned, most whom are born in NI are automatically granted UK citizenship and like pretty much every such country that does the same, you cannot passively renounce it. If UK nationality law was changed in NI to where being born there no longer granted automatic British citizenship at birth, but gave formal rights when actively applied for as is the case presently regarding Irish citizenship for those born in NI, this leaves us with a situation where most babies in NI are born stateless due to a lack of jus soli. That in itself throws up a fair few potential problems especially if there are questions concerning parentage, a baby born in NI to non-Irish or UK citizens whose parents own citizenship either doesn't allow or restricts jus sanguinis, parents refusing or just not bothering to formally apply for any nationality the child can receive etc. Even then, some born in NI may be entitled to automatic citizenship (though not Irish or British) of a country that doesn't recognise multiple citizenship and that trying to register British citizenship whilst already holding citizenship of another country has additional stringent checks in place that does not apply when citizenship is already granted at birth.

It's also worth remembering that since the GFA came into effect, Ireland itself has changed its rights to acquiring citizenship through jos soli after several incidents came to light of certain women deliberately coming to NI to give birth so their child could acquire an EU citizenship meaning both of them would be far harder to deport out of another EU country, as well as foreign nationals holding no Irish citizenship giving birth in the state and later being able to prevent themselves being deported, referencing a Supreme Court ruling from 1989 that forbade the deporting of a parent of an Irish citizen. This right was originally enshrined in the passing of the 19th amendment to the constitution that was tied to the rights of Irish citizenship stated in the GFA, and was later changed with the 27th amendment. Like it or not, immigration concerns are what drove the 27th amendment to pass after the loopholes of the idealism of the 19th amendment were being taken advantage of.

Iím not in agreement with you here for a few reasons. Firstly what the problem be in simply considering anyone born in NI as both a British and Irish citizen until such time as they confirm their preference?  That gets round the issue of statelessness although as shall be seen below I think thatís a misnomer anyway.

Secondly the example you gave is an interesting one because a person born in NI is not automatically British unless one of their parents is British or is settled in the UK so in your example the child is arguably stateless until they are 10 or their parent becomes settled. So there is already a subset of persons born here who the UK can not and do not know what their citizenship is. So the idea of not knowing what someone is until they assert a citizenship right is not the major issue itís suggested to be.

Thirdly British law provides no extra support for those wishing to establish Irish citizenship and as you have mentioned Irish citizenship is now far harder to get than it was pre GFA partially because of the GFA.

All in all I am failing to see what the impact of the relevant clauses of the GFA are to Britain. I then come back to my original point which is why If there was no point to them are they contained within the GFA. What was the intent of including them?

BennyCake

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7890
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #38 on: October 15, 2019, 07:58:50 PM »
Another thing...

If Irish citizenship of those in the north isnít technically recognised, should James McClean not be playing for Norn Iron?

Milltown Row2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 21510
  • It was the Ref that did it!!
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #39 on: October 15, 2019, 10:04:55 PM »
Another thing...

If Irish citizenship of those in the north isnít technically recognised, should James McClean not be playing for Norn Iron?


f**k! If big Cas can be Irish then James should be also  ;)
Anything I post is not the view of the County Board!! Nobody died in the making of this post ;-)

Fionntamhnach

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2918
  • "Hey Lawrence..."
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #40 on: October 16, 2019, 12:37:53 AM »
Iím not in agreement with you here for a few reasons. Firstly what the problem be in simply considering anyone born in NI as both a British and Irish citizen until such time as they confirm their preference?  That gets round the issue of statelessness although as shall be seen below I think thatís a misnomer anyway.

Secondly the example you gave is an interesting one because a person born in NI is not automatically British unless one of their parents is British or is settled in the UK so in your example the child is arguably stateless until they are 10 or their parent becomes settled. So there is already a subset of persons born here who the UK can not and do not know what their citizenship is. So the idea of not knowing what someone is until they assert a citizenship right is not the major issue itís suggested to be.

Thirdly British law provides no extra support for those wishing to establish Irish citizenship and as you have mentioned Irish citizenship is now far harder to get than it was pre GFA partially because of the GFA.

All in all I am failing to see what the impact of the relevant clauses of the GFA are to Britain. I then come back to my original point which is why If there was no point to them are they contained within the GFA. What was the intent of including them?

Okay Dokey. On the first point, this could be achieved but it would require parallel laws to be passed in both Dublin & London to allow for that to happen. It could be largely be based on where some countries do not formally recognise dual citizenship (except in possibly exceptional circumstances), but make temporary exemptions for children born to those whom are entitled to another nations' citizenship, Japan being one example, whereby they allow for recognition for multiple citizenship up to the age of 22 which by that point you are liable to lose Japanese citizenship if you fail to formalise having only Japanese nationality (in the eyes of Japan) having been given one month notice from the government. But this does in turn ask, should such an age limit for ultimate declaration apply here? Would declaring before that age allow for a separate system of renouncing citizenship in either country ensure that there is minimal burden placed on the person whilst also be secure? Would "doing nothing" lead to that person continuing to be identified as a dual national by default? Also, this still wouldn't address those whom either passively renounce or never recognise such citizenship in the first place, as active renouncement would still be required.

Secondly - you're correct that someone born in NI is not automatically given UK citizenship irregardless - I let that slip whereas at other times I've mentioned that "most" born in NI automatically acquire UK citizenship.

On the issue of statelessness, both Ireland and the UK have signed and ratified the UN Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness and this means both countries undertake to give those born in their jurisdictions that would be otherwise stateless, citizenship of their country of birth. Neither country automatically grants this at birth, but either will provide for citizenship either having met residency conditions (i.e. in the UK, resident for the first five years since birth) or at the discretion of the relevant government minister in either state whom would nominally grant such a request after the presentation of relevant evidence. An idea I previously mentioned about most children potentially born in NI de facto stateless shouldn't be taken lightly, as such a position would find a person in a disadvantage where citizenship or nationality is required to be presented - not just for travel outside of the CTA (and even that can be hampered) but also to prove right of legibility concerning employment, education, renting a property, opening a bank account etc. Notable issues on this do occur in countries near enough to home - Estonian and Latvian nationality laws have arisen to problems of ethnic Russians in both countries that are not otherwise entitled to either local (full) citizenship, nor Russian citizenship.

In the other points, it is not as I understand any more difficult now for an NI born person post-2004 whom would be eligible to obtain an Irish passport any more than anyone born in the Republic that is equally eligible would be, and essentially no different in those circumstances from 1998 to 2004. Also, every Post Office in NI that keeps UK passport application forms also keep Irish passport forms as well, and they will forward on applications for either at the respective PO. The one difference is that the UK passport has a validity checking service in place to ensure that everything presented for application is kosher before they forward it on, while it isn't yet provided for Irish passport applications. One thing missing is an Irish passport office either based in NI or in a location closer to it than Dublin (e.g. Monaghan town, Letterkenny), and AFAIK the UK government has no objections to the Irish DFA opening such an office in NI should they wish to.

Everything else is a matter for the courts to decide.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2019, 02:34:14 AM by Fionntamhnach »
Signature is in quarantine...

David McKeown

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2299
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #41 on: October 16, 2019, 05:25:36 AM »
Fionntamhnach

I think the point I go back to is, I think it was clearly the intention of the GFA to require of the UK some form of legislative change to domestic UK law to either protect or enhance the rights of those born in NI to claim Irish citizenship (if legally entitled), British citizenship or to have both, certainly something more than anyone who have been entitled to dual citizenship of the UK and another country (not Ireland) would have. I donít believe that what that change was to be is prescribed by the GFA but I do think it is clearly the intention that something should be done to give a practical effect to the wording of the GFA. I further think that we can both agree that nothing has been done domestically. Which in turn means that as the law stands the De Souza decision was correct.

Iím not trying to suggest what that change should be I am just trying to suggest that the GFA imposes an obligation on the UK to do something and that a failure to so do leaves the UK in breach of an international obligation created by the GFA.

Fionntamhnach

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2918
  • "Hey Lawrence..."
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #42 on: October 16, 2019, 11:18:26 AM »
Fair 'nuff. My point is that trying to legislate on how to accommodate such aspiration or obligation in the spirit of the GFA throws up potential issues concerning international diplomacy and citizenship beyond Irish-British relations, with the 19th Amendment being an example. At best, successive British governments may have felt that amendments to nationality legislation within the UK wasn't needed to meet the aims mentioned in the GFA. At worst, they were being deliberately or even mendaciously neglegent. Given current political shenanigans in Westminster, it would take a brave MP to try and introduce such measures to remedy this at this time, as I can't see the current government and home secretary doing so.
Signature is in quarantine...

David McKeown

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2299
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #43 on: October 16, 2019, 11:38:10 AM »
Fair 'nuff. My point is that trying to legislate on how to accommodate such aspiration or obligation in the spirit of the GFA throws up potential issues concerning international diplomacy and citizenship beyond Irish-British relations, with the 19th Amendment being an example. At best, successive British governments may have felt that amendments to nationality legislation within the UK wasn't needed to meet the aims mentioned in the GFA. At worst, they were being deliberately or even mendaciously neglegent. Given current political shenanigans in Westminster, it would take a brave MP to try and introduce such measures to remedy this at this time, as I can't see the current government and home secretary doing so.

I think we are broadly in agreement then. Although I welcome Simon Conveys comments about raising the issue with the UK

Franko

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2120
    • View Profile
Re: You're All British in the North Now!!
« Reply #44 on: October 16, 2019, 02:02:19 PM »
Fair 'nuff. My point is that trying to legislate on how to accommodate such aspiration or obligation in the spirit of the GFA throws up potential issues concerning international diplomacy and citizenship beyond Irish-British relations, with the 19th Amendment being an example. At best, successive British governments may have felt that amendments to nationality legislation within the UK wasn't needed to meet the aims mentioned in the GFA. At worst, they were being deliberately or even mendaciously neglegent. Given current political shenanigans in Westminster, it would take a brave MP to try and introduce such measures to remedy this at this time, as I can't see the current government and home secretary doing so.

I think we are broadly in agreement then. Although I welcome Simon Conveys comments about raising the issue with the UK

It would seem that one of the chief participants in the negotiations would concur with your thoughts David.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-50067547