May's Brexit plan goes pop after 'humiliation' by EU, British media says

Andreus via Getty Images

But that backstop can not divide the United Kingdom into two customs territories, and we will be bringing forward our own proposals shortly.

Prime Minister Theresa May went to dine with European leaders this week, to pitch her compromise proposals for a soft departure from the union and its trading bloc, but she ran into a wall of criticism on Thursday, hearing her counterparts declare her Brexit plan unworkable.

It's clear that significant gaps remain between both sides. The Bank of England has warned that house prices would crash, businesses fret over chaos at the Channel ports and airlines worry that the agreements that keep planes in the air across Europe would fall away.

Keir Starmer MP, the Shadow Brexit Secretary, said: "It has been clear for weeks that Theresa May's Chequers' proposals can not deliver the comprehensive plan we need to protect jobs, the economy and avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland".

May has claimed that her proposals were the "only serious, credible" way to avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland.

Tusk warned that the clock is ticking. Summit chair Donald Tusk said he was more optimistic about getting agreements both to ease Britain out gently and to sketch out a future free trade pact. "Therefore, every day that is left, we must use for talks".

The rebellion though would only arise if agreement can be reached first between the European Union and the UK.

May will address her soon-to-be former European colleagues at a dinner Wednesday night at the Felsenreitschule theater, where she's expected to push back against Barnier's proposals.

"There is a lot of common ground on the basis of [the United Kingdom plan], especially in the area of domestic security and also foreign cooperation and other issues, but there is still a lot of work to do on the question of how future trade relations will look". But nothing official will come out of the two days in Salzburg, as it is an informal meeting.

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As EU leaders met for the "family photo", a Reuters photograph caught the PM looking isolated from the rest - capturing the mood precisely.

Mr Tusk added that October would be the "moment of truth" for reaching a deal, and that "if the conditions are there" an additional summit would be held in November to "formalise" it.

The timetable has been set, but the route to the destination is still to be determined.

Matching repeated similar messages from May's side in recent weeks, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said that the European Union had "made more preparations for a no deal".

It's time for a people's vote on Brexit, with the option to stay and lead reform from within the EU.

"Those who explain that we can easily live without Europe, that everything is going to be alright, and that it's going to bring a lot of money home are liars", Macron said.

In remarks likely to fire up Brexiteers campaigning for the government to "chuck Chequers", he added the proposal conceived at the prime minister's countryside retreat was "not perfect".

He told HuffPost UK that, with Labour also planning to vote against Mrs May's plan, the "critical size of the voting bloc is quite small, it's basically a dozen people".

While progress was being made in negotiations, he pointed out that it was "not as simple as suggested by those who promised the British people the Earth at the time of the referendum".

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