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The agreement defined a complex set of provisions in a number of areas, including: some commentators described the agreement as „Sunningdale for Slow Learners,“ indicating that this was only what was proposed in the 1973 Sunningdale Agreement. [22] This assertion has been criticized by political scientists such as Richard Wilford and Stefan Wolff. The former said that „it`s… [Sunningdale and Belfast] have considerable differences, both in terms of the content and circumstances of their negotiation, implementation and implementation.“ [23] The agreement consists of two related documents, both agreed on Good Friday, 10 April 1998 in Belfast: the conference takes place in the form of regular and frequent meetings between British and Irish ministers to promote cooperation between the two governments at all levels. On issues not left to Northern Ireland, the Irish government can present views and proposals. All decisions of the Conference are taken by mutual agreement between the two governments and the two governments, in order to make resolute efforts to resolve the differences between them. The agreement was for Northern Ireland to be part of the United Kingdom and remain in place until a majority of the population of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland wished otherwise. If this happens, the British and Irish governments will be „obliged“ to implement this decision. The previous text contains only four articles; It is this short text that is the legal agreement, but it contains the latter agreement in its timetables. [7] Technically, this proposed agreement can be distinguished as a multi-party agreement, unlike the Belfast Agreement itself.

[7] The main themes addressed by Sunningdale and dealt with in the Belfast Agreement are the principle of self-determination, the recognition of the two national identities, Anglo-Irish intergovernmental cooperation and legal power-sharing procedures, such as inter-community voting and the D`Hondt system for appointing ministers to the executive. [24] [25] Former IRA member and journalist Tommy McKearney says the main difference is the British government`s intention to negotiate a comprehensive agreement including the IRA and the most intransigent unionists. [26] With regard to the right to self-determination, two qualifications are recorded by the writer Austen Morgan. First, the transfer of territory from one state to another must be done through an international agreement between the British and Irish governments. Second, the population of Northern Ireland can no longer be alone in united Ireland; They need not only the Irish government, but also the people of their neighbouring country, Ireland, to support unity. Mr Morgan also pointed out that, unlike the Irish Act 1949 and the Northern Ireland Constitution Act 1973, drawn up under Sunningdale, the 1998 agreement and the resulting British legislation explicitly provide for the possibility of a unified Ireland. [27] Northern Ireland has lived with this agreement for 20 years, and its name (in any form) is never far from the sharp languages of our politicians.