Thursday, 14 December, 2017

Britain urges move to Brexit phase 2 to solve border issue

Theresa May and Jean Claude Juncker Theresa May and Jean Claude Juncker Credit Virginia Mayo AP
Kenny Thornton | 08 December, 2017, 10:35

Tusk said in October that if London failed to settle divorce terms by the end of this year, the EU would have to reconsider its approach to negotiations meant to limit disruption when Britain leaves the European Union in March 2019.

An early morning meeting in Brussels between Juncker and British Prime Minister Theresa May, whose efforts to reach a deal broke down in failure earlier this week, was also a possibility, Juncker's spokesman said.

"Whatever way we devise for getting onto the body of the (Brexit) talks, it's got to be consistent with the whole of the United Kingdom taking back control of our laws, of our borders and of our cash", Johnson told reporters.

Britain said it was confident of a deal on Brexit just hours after a tentative agreement with the European Union over the Irish border was dashed by Prime Minister Theresa May's kingmakers in Belfast.

The party's opposition on Monday led to talks breaking down.

The Lib Dem spokesman said there was "still no solution over how to prevent a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland" in the text of the joint report.

India Granted Membership of Wassenaar Arrangement
China has favoured a criteria-based approach for expansion of the 48-member group, which controls global nuclear commerce. Its opposition has made India's entry into the group hard as the NSG works on the principle of consensus.

Under-pressure Mrs May had been hoping to make a new offer by Friday on the Irish border to satisfy both Dublin and Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party, which props up her Government. "I don't believe that the City will fall apart and that everyone will flee".

European Council President Donald Tusk revealed last night he would give a speech to media at 6:50am today but gave no indication of what he would say, beyond an update on Brexit.

In that scenario, the leaders would once again rule that insufficient progress had been made on the opening issues of citizens' rights, the financial settlement and the Irish border for talks on trade and a transition period to start.

The PM said there would be no hard border and the Good Friday Agreement would be upheld.

Despite scepticism in Brussels over the tight timetable, May and her chief negotiator David Davis have been clear they want to have a full post-Brexit free trade deal sealed by the time Britain leaves.

The DUP insists it will not accept any agreement in which Northern Ireland was treated differently from the rest of the UK.

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