Ireland can not let United Kingdom decide Brexit backstop end, says Varadkar

Ireland can not let United Kingdom decide Brexit backstop end, says Varadkar

Ireland can not let United Kingdom decide Brexit backstop end, says Varadkar

Both the European Union and United Kingdom have agreed the need for a backstop, but not how it should operate.

Writing in the Sunday Times, Mr Davis said: "It was an unwise decision to accept the EU's language on dealing with the Northern Ireland border".

The Sunday Times report said preparations for a final Brexit deal were "far more advanced than previously disclosed" and that May's agreement would satisfy both remain-voting Tories and the hardline Eurosceptics within her party.

The Prime Minister was reported last night to have secured private concessions from Brussels that would keep the whole of the United Kingdom in a customs union with the EU.

A Downing Street spokeswoman added: "The prime minister is clear we are leaving the customs union".

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The agreement would avoid the need for an Irish backstop - which has left Britain and Brussels deadlocked - and would stop Northern Ireland being treated differently to the rest of the UK.

The temporary customs arrangement believed to be on the table would see all of the United Kingdom remain closely aligned to European Union trade rules for a time period.

The Prime Minister is said to be preparing to sell the plan to Brexiteers in the Cabinet by insisting the customs arrangement will not be permanent, and that the alternative is a potentially disastrous "no-deal" exit from the bloc in March.

It has been reported that Theresa May is close to striking a backstop deal with Brussels which would keep the entire United Kingdom in a customs union.

Mr Johnson dismissed suggestions that the arrangement would lead the way to a Canada-style trade deal, arguing that the joint UK/EU political declaration on the future relationship due to be released alongside the withdrawal agreement will be "worthless".

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Following a phone conversation with Mrs May on Monday morning, the Taoiseach said both leaders emphasised their commitment to avoiding a hard border in Ireland and the need for a legally operable backstop. "That is why we are increasingly positive on the expectation of reaching a deal", he added.

Her plan would avoid the need for a hard border in Northern Ireland, which has always been the main sticking point in negotiations. "Are we being hurtled toward a Hotel California Brexit where we can check out but never leave?"

Chief Executives from Waterstones, Innocent Drinks and Lastminute.com stated that the United Kingdom faces either a "blindfold or a destructive hard Brexit" in the note.

Other people who put their name to the letter include Cobra Beer founder Lord Bilimoria, former Marks and Spencer chairman and ex-Labour peer Lord Myners, Alex Chesterman, founder of the Zoopla property website, and Sir Simon Robertson, the ex-chairman of Rolls-Royce.

They suggested that a December deal would mean not only a later parliamentary vote but would require spending on no-deal planning and changes to the roles of hundreds of civil service.

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