My article about Brexit and Security (“Terrorism: the EU picture“) has just been published in Counsel Magazine.  In summary:

  • The leadership role in the EU exercised by the UK in matters relating to security (in particular counter-terrorism) will inevitably be lost after Brexit.
  • There are reasons to hope that broadly satisfactory arrangements can be made for subsequent access to EU databases, institutions and procedures such as the European Arrest Warrant.
  • But six factors are identified that have the potential to obstruct agreement: lack of precedent, the UK red line over acceptance of CJEU rulings, difficulties in arriving at a bespoke arrangement, dealing with future EU developments, political contagion and data sharing.

The article reiterates in part my oral evidence of 28 February 2017 to Parliament’s Committee on Exiting the European Union (“Brexit Committee”) on the same subject, which is reflected in the Committee’s report at paras 92 and 232-272.

Some of the same issues were explored (with a particular emphasis on data sharing) in an excellent seminar organised by Brick Court Chambers in December 2016.  Speakers were Jemima Stratford QC, Graham Smith of Bird & Bird, Alison Duncan-Mercy of the Met, Georges Baur of EFTA, Yvette Cooper, Chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee, and me.  An account of the seminar, with link to video, is here.

During the referendum campaign, I wrote this piece in Prospect, founded on my own observations in Brussels and in UK ports during my time as Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation.

More detailed thoughts on Europe and counter-terrorism are in my Graham Turnbull Lecture, given at the Law Society in April 2016 and published on their website.   At paragraphs 29-56 I discuss Europe as a source of comparisons, a source of legal obligations and a vehicle for cooperation.

My thoughts on the Irish border are elsewhere on this site.


Post updated 24 April to include link to Counsel article