The Northern Ireland Protocol, known as the Irish Backstop, was an annex to the November 2018 draft agreement outlining provisions to avoid a hard border in Ireland after the UK`s withdrawal from the European Union. The protocol provided for a provision of the safety net to deal with the circumstances in which satisfactory alternative arrangements were to come into force at the end of the transition period. This project has been replaced by a new protocol that will be described as follows. On 15 November 2018, the day after the agreement and the support of the British government were presented, several members of the government resigned, including Dominic Raab, Secretary of State for leaving the European Union.  On 15 January 2019, the House of Commons voted with 230 votes against the Brexit withdrawal agreement, the largest vote against the British government in history.  The government may survived a vote of confidence the next day.  On March 12, 2019, the House of Commons voted 149 votes against the agreement, the fourth-biggest defeat of the government in the history of the House of Commons.  A third vote on the Brexit withdrawal agreement, widely expected on 19 March 2019, was rejected by the House of Commons spokesman on 18 March 2019, on the basis of a parliamentary convention of 2 April 1604, which prevented British governments from forcing the House of Commons to vote several times on a subject already voted on by the House of Commons.    An abbreviated version of the withdrawal agreement, in which the annex political statement had been withdrawn, consisted of the test of „substantial amendments,“ so that a third vote was held on 29 March 2019, but was rejected by 58 votes.  EU and UK negotiators have reached an agreement on the draft withdrawal agreement allowing the European Council (Article 50) to adopt guidelines for the future EU-UK relationship on 23 March 2018. The timing of ratifications has been discussed. The European Parliament (EP) has said it will not approve the VA until the UK ratification process is completed.
After an unprecedented vote on 4 December 2018, MEPs ruled that the UK government was not respecting Parliament because it refused to give Parliament full legal advice on the consequences of its proposed withdrawal terms.  The focus of the consultation was on the legal effect of the „backstop“ agreement for Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom with regard to the CUSTOMS border between the EU and the United Kingdom and its impact on the Good Friday agreement that led to the end of the unrest in Northern Ireland, including whether , according to the proposals, the UK would be certain that it would be able to leave the EU in a practical sense.