Where do the EU's 27 countries stand on the Brexit deal?

Where do the EU's 27 countries stand on the Brexit deal?

Where do the EU's 27 countries stand on the Brexit deal?

Sinn Féin vice-president Michelle O'Neill tweeted that Theresa May "continues to ignore the majority voices in the north opposed to this unwanted, reckless Tory/DUP Brexit".

The EU's guidelines on negotiations for Britain's future relationship with the bloc had granted Spain veto rights over the issue of Gibraltar, making it a potential difficulty.

"There is another summit in December, I really hope we can have it done in November, and if we don't then we will do it in December, but to be honest I just don't know, I really think it's in everyone's interest that we get an agreement as soon as possible", he said.

European Union leaders must now decide whether to hold an emergency summit next month, despite warnings from leaders including French president Emmanuel Macron that no further meeting could take place without progress on the Irish border.

Brussels diplomats pointed out that this meeting had been billed as a decisive meeting where a draft deal might be tabled and tentatively approved.

May said that the idea has emerged of an option to extend the implementation period for a matter of months to give time for a permanent solution to the border issue. It is understood that the meeting was "cordial and positive".

But the European Union is upping the pressure on May to give ground.

Tusk advised May that "creative" thinking from Britain was required to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland, the issue that has brought divorce negotiations to a standstill.

The end of transition had originally been fixed for December 2020 but it is now suggested that it could be pushed out by another year to the end of 2021.

One prominent Brexit supporter, Conservative lawmaker Jacob Rees-Mogg, told Reuters that any extension to the transition was "a bad and expensive idea". And he added "this prolongation of the transition period probably will happen".

The so-called "backstop" will apply if there is no proper EU-UK trade deal post Brexit.


Mrs May relies on her DUP allies' 10 MPs to prop up her minority government in key votes and there have been suggestions the Northern Irish party could vote against the Budget.

In her news conference Mrs May appeared to rehearse the arguments she will likely use to argue back against those criticisms - that the idea isn't new, that it wasn't requested by the United Kingdom, but that it is worth considering if it opens up the blockage of the Irish backstop.

Follow the latest developments from the Brussels summit with our rolling Brexit Update.

"My view is that we should really only have one if there is a objective to having one. We have been able to negotiate changes and on foot of them we had a second referendum in the past but I do recall Irish people and me personally taking offence at foreign leaders coming over to intervene on our referendums so I would never repeat that mistake".

Other delegations expressed a certain mannerly frustration with the UK's failure to advance the action.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Mr Hunt said: "The reason why this week has been hard is because Theresa May has not buckled".

I understand Theresa May is prepared to agree to another year of Brexit transition (membership of European Union stripped of voting rights) to 31 Dec 2021 so long as the European Union abandons an "unacceptable" Northern Ireland-only backstop of customs and single-market membership.

Many EU leaders "see the delays as a negotiating tactic by London to try to force concessions", Nelson reported.

On the Irish border issue Tajani said, "We want a flexible border and to preserve the Good Friday Agreement, but we also want to protect our agri-food sector, industry and health". "That is the problem", the Lithuanian president told reporters.

But when the prime minister was asked in the House of Commons earlier Wednesday whether her government's blueprint for an amicable divorce was dead, May replied: "The answer is no". The choice now being offered by Brussels is a choice between "two exquisitely embarrassing varieties of humiliation": an option of either "treating Northern Ireland as an economic colony of the European Union, or treating the whole of the United Kingdom as such a colony".

"But I still believe that this agreement is possible and our goal is to find the solution and to find the way".

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