Cross-border cooperation and British–Irish institutions
in Direct rule and the governance of Northern Ireland
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This chapter traces the development of the Anglo-Irish relationship and cross-border cooperation under direct rule. It describes the different levels of institutional cooperation including the involvement of other territorial governments from Great Britain. It discusses the growth of intergovernmental bodies, the proposals for developing cross-border cooperation from 1990 to 1999 and the establishment of cross-border institutions. This chapter explains that direct rule administrations have seen cross-border cooperation as part of their approach to building peace and a political settlement, for improving relations both between North and South and between Britain and Ireland. It also suggests that though direct rule brought the political will to promote North-South cooperation, cross-border working faced a number of more practical obstacles, which include differences in policy and legislation, legal and constitutional differences and a lack of dedicated budgets.

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