Brexit chaos continues as UK's Theresa May warns against a leadership change

New Brexit secretary to focus on UK's readiness for exit

British Prime Minister Theresa May fought back against critics of her Brexit deal Saturday, telling opponents from within her party their alternative plans for Britain's departure from the European Union wouldn't work.

It also found a second referendum would be a close call, with Remain beating Leave by 45pc to 43pc, with 10pc of respondents saying they had "had enough of Brexit and wouldn't vote".

"We now have an intense week of negotiations ahead of us in the run-up to the special European Council on Sunday", May will say in a speech to the CBI business lobby group's annual conference on Monday, according to advance extracts.

But May, who has defiantly vowed to stay on as prime minister, got a rare boost on Friday when Michael Gove, the most prominent Brexit-supporting minister, gave his backing to her, saying he would stay on as environment minister.

"I can not reconcile the terms of the proposed deal with the promises we made to the country in our manifesto at the last election", Raab said.

She told Sky News television she was "absolutely determined to support the PM in getting the best possible deal for the United Kingdom as we leave the EU".

Letters from 48 Conservative MPs will be needed to spark a leadership contest, and its reported that close to that number have said they want Theresa May to go.

At a hastily scrambled press briefing, Mrs May issued a stark warning: "If we do not move forward with a Brexit agreement, we can not know what will follow".

Corbyn said if May's Brexit agreement comes to Parliament in its current state the Labour Party would vote against it.

Writing in the Sunday Times, former No10 chief strategist Steve Hilton said his old boss "should be on the list" of people lining up to replace Theresa May.

May's deal will now be put to a series of regional and domestic tests.

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May is battling to win over rebels in her own ranks and save her leadership, with two Cabinet ministers quitting and other Conservative critics launching a bid to oust her after Britain agreed to a divorce deal with the European Union this week.

One eurosceptic lawmaker said more colleagues were either putting in letters or were increasingly minded to do so.

High profile Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg fared better with 17pc support, while Boris Johnson was backed by 21pc of those polled - but he was also the most actively opposed, with 61pc against his appointment.

In critical times like these, securing the best guests for my Sunday morning political show can be a last minute exercise, because politicians want to wait and see how events unfold.

May will be traveling to Brussels to meet with EU leaders before an emergency European Council summit on November 25. "It would not. That issue is still going to be there", she told the Daily Mail newspaper.

Last month the UK Government released a memorandum which said the Brexit deal vote should not be automatically subject to amendments.

The real people's vote was in 2016 when we voted to leave the EU.

"We need to be going out there and grasping opportunities", Raab told the paper.

Mr Green told the BBC: "If you step back, we are at the absolute crunch point of the most important negotiations this country has had for decades".

Meanwhile the Confederation of British Industry, the main business lobby group, said the deal was not flawless but a compromise that "takes no deal off the table" and opens the path to frictionless trade in the future, said CBI chief Carolyn Fairbairn.

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