UK officials say the government is committed to protecting Northern Ireland`s interests and “successfully Brexit” for Northern Ireland.56 They insist that Brexit offers new economic opportunities for Northern Ireland outside the EU. Supporters of the renegotiated withdrawal agreement say it will help improve Northern Ireland`s economic prospects. Northern Ireland will remain in the UK customs union and will therefore be able to participate in future UK trade agreements, but it will also retain privileged access to the EU internal market, which could make it a more attractive destination for foreign direct investment.57 116 This vision of the third-party role therefore differs from focusing on third parties as “neutral” mediators. What was most important here was not neutrality, but the fact that third parties could offer something valuable to the parties themselves. This more traditional understanding of the role of neutral actors in peace processes was illustrated by the creation of the Independent Police Labour Commission, which created a blue pressure for police reform, which the parties themselves failed to do. The agreement was reached between the British and Irish governments as well as eight northern Ireland political parties or groups. Three were representative of unionism: the Ulster Unionist Party, which had led unionism in Ulster since the early 20th century, and two small parties linked to loyalist paramilitaries, the Progressive Unionist Party (linked to the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) and the Ulster Democratic Party (the political wing of the Ulster Defence Association (UDA). Two of them have been widely described as nationalists: the Social Democratic and Labour Party and Sinn Féin, the Republican party affiliated with the Provisional Republican Army.   Apart from these rival traditions, there were two other assemblies, the Inter-Community Alliance Party and the Northern Ireland Women`s Coalition.
There was also the Labour coalition. U.S. Senator George J. Mitchell was sent by U.S. President Bill Clinton to chair the talks between parties and groups.  Heath`s successor, Conservative Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, was heavily unionized by both personal inclination and Tory politics. Her hard-line instincts were reinforced by the IRA`s 1984 attack on the Conservative convention in Brighton, during which she narrowly escaped and an important adviser was killed.50 Yet Thatcher`s decision to conclude the 1985 Anglo-Irish agreement without consultation with union leaders was a decisive moment for the start of the peace process. Although their aim was to secure Ireland`s support for stronger action against the IRA, their willingness to accept an Irish role in Northern Ireland`s affairs stunned trade unionists and helped fuel a sense that decentralisation (regional autonomy) and power-sharing, rather than government- was a more reliable way of protecting trade union interests. As part of the agreement, it was proposed to build on the existing Inter-Parliamentary Commission in English-Irish. Prior to the agreement, the body was composed only of parliamentarians from the British and Irish assemblies.
In 2001, as proposed by the agreement, it was extended to include parliamentarians of all members of the Anglo-Irish Council. As agreed in the Good Friday Agreement, the Assembly was elected in 1998.