Paramilitary groups temporarily pull support for 1998 Good Friday Agreement citing concern over Brexit trade disruption. Northern Irish loyalist paramilitary groups have told British Prime Minister Boris Johnson they are temporarily withdrawing support for the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement due to concerns over the United Kingdom’s Brexit deal with the European Union. While the groups pledged “peaceful and democratic” opposition to the deal, such a stark warning increases the pressure on Johnson, his Irish counterpart Micheal Martin and the EU over Brexit. The 1998 peace accord, also known as the Belfast Agreement, ended three decades of violence between mostly Catholic nationalists fighting for a united Ireland and mostly Protestant unionists, or loyalists, who want Northern Ireland to stay part of the UK.The loyalist paramilitaries including the Ulster Volunteer Force, Ulster Defence Association and Red Hand Commando said they were concerned about the disruption to trade between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK due to the Brexit deal. “The loyalist groupings are herewith withdrawing their support for the Belfast Agreement,” they said in a March 3 letter to Johnson from Loyalist Communities Council chairman David Campbell, seen by Reuters news agency. A similar letter has been sent to the Irish leader and copies were sent to the European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic.

via al jazeera: Northern Irish loyalists end support for peace deal over Brexit