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On the occasion of the second Brendan Halligan annual lecture, our esteemed guest speaker, Mr Michel Barnier, gave a state of play of the Brexit negotiations, immediately following the European Council of 28/29 June 2018. He focused in particular on the issues of the negotiations for the Withdrawal Agreement, including the question of Ireland and Northern Ireland, and explained the underlying reasons for the Union’s backstop solution presented last March. Moreover he underlined the need not to call into question the integrity of the Single market, and by enlargement, will address the concrete benefits which all Member States gain through membership of the Single market.