Top EU officials were warned Wednesday to make plans to cope with the fallout from a "no-deal" Brexit as their chief negotiator said talks with Britain must make more progress before next week's crunch summit.
"The Prime Minister is a unionist".
Under pressure from all sides, Theresa May told journalists at Downing Street reception that talks on the key issue of the Irish border were likely to continue until November, while cabinet ministers who met with May on Thursday evening were cited by the Financial Times as saying the border issue was close to being settled.
The Irish backstop measure, created to ensure no new border emerges between Ireland and Northern Ireland, is supposed to be temporary until a UK-EU trade deal can be agreed, and Theresa May pledged earlier this year that the arrangement would expire "at the very latest by the end of December 2021".
"She has made it very, very clear that she will not allow there to be border down the Irish Sea, that the integrity of the United Kingdom must remain intact".
Arlene Foster, the DUP leader, said on Thursday afternoon that the prime minister could not "in good conscience" recommend such a deal and vowed to oppose it.
The Northern Ireland Retail Consortium (NIRC), which was also at the meeting, said the deal on the table was uniquely beneficial to Northern Ireland's economy, which would suffer disproportionately from Brexit.
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He reiterated the EU's line welcoming May's proposals for a bold free-trade deal "without tariffs or quotas" and close security ties after Brexit.
Selmayr, secretary general of the European Commission, has been tasked with coordinating preparedness to protect the EU from economic and political damage if Britain leaves the bloc on March 29 next year without a divorce deal in place. The Cabinet is unlikely to agree the new proposal on Tuesday, so the European Union summit may have to park some key issues until November.
It comes as Brexit negotiations enter what is being referred to as a "tunnel phase", with no publication of the British or European Union position on the backstop to be published until it is agreed.
"She will not have DUP support regardless of whether the government tries to bribe, bully or browbeat us into accepting it", Wilson also said.
He added that the DUP could vote down the Budget but still support the government in a confidence vote, as long as it changed its approach to Brexit.
In a Q&A session with Reuters, Tony Blair advised parliamentarians to vote the Brexit deal down. Many Cabinet ministers last night warned May that the plan simply would not pass through the Commons if it did not contain a time-limited provision because it would look like the United Kingdom had agreed to an endless customs union with Europe, the BBC reported.