Brexit: Theresa May responds to Jeremy Corbyn's letter

Brexit: Theresa May responds to Jeremy Corbyn's letter

Brexit: Theresa May responds to Jeremy Corbyn's letter

Mr Johnson suggested he could back the Brexit deal if it included a time limit and unilateral exit mechanism from the Irish border backstop, but the former foreign secretary warned putting the changes in a codicil to the withdrawal agreement would not be good enough.

With less than 50 days to go to Brexit day on March 29, British firms still have no idea what the country's new trading relationship with the European Union will look like, so they're taking a safety-first approach.

Speaking after a dinner with Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay on Monday night, European Union negotiator Michel Barnier said the talks had been "constructive", but added it was "clear from our side we're not going to reopen the withdrawal agreement, but we will continue our discussions in the coming days".

Downing Street attempted to defuse the row after the Prime Minister failed to rule out further talks on a customs union in a letter to Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour leader.

Mrs May also came under fresh pressure from her own side not to compromise, with International Trade Secretary Liam Fox saying Labour's proposals were "not workable", while Boris Johnson claimed they would produce a "toxic" Brexit.

And he insisted the United Kingdom must be able to unilaterally leave any Northern Ireland backstop in the next three years.

With a vote due on February 14, May will ask Parliament to reaffirm its desire to remove the contentious Irish backstop clause from the Withdrawal Agreement, according to an official, who asked not to be identified.

Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer said his "key question" about Mrs May's response was: "Is she prepared to move her red lines and find a consensus?"

She insisted her deal already met numerous conditions he had set.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman said she would address MPs a day earlier than expected to give MPs more time to "digest the content" ahead of a series of votes scheduled for Thursday, allowing parliamentarians another chance to alter the course of Brexit or seek a delay.

Previous year the government said it wanted to replicate the EU's trade agreements "as far as possible".

The existing Political Declaration, setting out the goals for the future relationship between the United Kingdom and the EU, "explicitly provides for the benefits of a customs union - no tariffs, fees, charges or quantitative restrictions across all sectors and no checks on rules of origin", Mrs May told Mr Corbyn.

'I don't think there is any mileage in trying to do a deal with Labour, ' he told the BBC.

Theresa May has rejected Jeremy Corbyn's demand that the rights of British workers will automatically keep pace with those in the European Union after Brexit.

She said the government needed to "get serious" about policy on a customs union and guarantee to "legislate for the protections around workers' rights".

The call comes after Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn last week set out five conditions he wanted to see met before he would consider supporting Mrs May's Brexit plan.

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