Published: Sat, November 10, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

UK PM office rejects BBC report on November Brexit timetable

UK PM office rejects BBC report on November Brexit timetable

THE Irish government has warned against assuming a breakthrough on the Brexit border row is imminent.

Mrs Foster said: 'The Prime Minister's letter raises alarm bells for those who value the integrity of our precious Union and for those who want a proper Brexit for the whole of the UK.

The Democratic Unionist Party said it appeared the Prime Minister was prepared to break her promise never to agree a deal which could separate Ireland from the UK.

Brexiters are adamant that there must be a mechanism that would allow the United Kingdom to leave, and many back one that would allow the United Kingdom to withdraw unilaterally - without Brussels' consent - which has been rejected by figures such as the Irish Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar.

"So while of course we want progress to be made and we want it to be made as quickly as possible because time is moving on, I would urge caution that people don't get carried away on the back of rumour in the coming days".

Former Brexit secretary David Davis said the full government legal advice on Brexit must be published and insisted how the United Kingdom could exit from the customs union must be "pinned down" before MPs and peers vote on the deal.

Brexit talks had been deadlocked over the so-called backstop - the fallback position that would be activated if a future EU-UK trade deal does not produce a solution that would prevent a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Sky News understands Environment Secretary Michael Gove, a leading Brexiteer like Dr Fox, is also among those cabinet ministers wanting to view Mr Cox's advice in full before giving their consent to a deal. In a phone call with May on Monday, Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said he would consider a "review mechanism" for the backstop.

The concerns focus on Attorney General Geoffrey Cox's advice on how an exit from the backstop could be found to make sure the United Kingdom is not permanently kept within a customs union, which would severely curtail its ability to strike global free trade deals - a key prize for Brexiteers.

"We will need to be satisfied in the negotiations that we have achieved the best deal that we possibly can for the United Kingdom", he said.

Speaking to a conference of the centre-right European People's Party (EPP) in Finland, Mr Barnier said: "The European project is fragile, it is under threat, it is perishable and at the same time it is vital".

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