On January 23, 2020, the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement Bill (WAB) was passed by the UK Parliament, marking a significant milestone in the country`s exit from the European Union.
The bill, which outlines the terms of the UK`s departure from the EU, was passed by a majority of 99 in the House of Commons and by 29 votes in the House of Lords. This followed months of intense negotiations and political wrangling over the terms of the agreement, as well as the thorny issue of the Irish border.
The passing of the WAB means that the UK will officially leave the EU on January 31, 2020, after which a transition period of 11 months will begin. During this period, the UK will continue to follow EU rules and regulations, but will no longer have any say in the decision-making processes of the EU.
The WAB also includes provisions for protecting the rights of EU citizens living in the UK, as well as UK citizens living in EU member states. It also sets out the financial settlement that the UK must make to the EU to cover outstanding financial commitments.
While the passing of the WAB is a significant step in the Brexit process, it is by no means the end of the story. The future relationship between the UK and the EU still needs to be negotiated, and issues such as trade, immigration, and security will need to be addressed.
The passing of the WAB has also reignited calls for another Scottish independence referendum, as Scotland voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU in the 2016 Brexit referendum.
In conclusion, the passing of the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement Bill is a significant moment in the UK`s history, but there is still much work to be done to ensure a smooth exit from the EU and a successful future relationship between the two entities.