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Britain's May says Irish backstop cannot derail Brexit

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on October 15, 2018 - Duration: 01:32s

Britain's May says Irish backstop cannot derail Brexit

British Prime Minister Theresa May is facing growing pressure to rethink her plan for leaving the EU after Brexit talks reached a stand-off at the weekend over the so-called Irish backstop.

As Laura Frykberg reports, the crisis has kept sterling near one week lows ahead of a crucial summit in Brussels on Wednesday

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Britain's May says Irish backstop cannot derail Brexit

A make of break week for Brexit negotiations... Has not got off to a good start.

The UK and EU are no closer to a deal following stalled talks at the weekend.

Not that that stopped the UK Prime Minister Theresa May striking an optimistic note a day later in parliament.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) UK PRIME MINISTER THERESA MAY SAYING: "This is the time for cool, calm heads to prevail and it's the time for a clear eyes to focus on the few remaining issues to be agreed." Those issues will be put to the test on Wednesday - when May meets EU leaders in Brussels..Perhaps the most crucial one is the fate of the Irish border after Brexit..the UK's only link by land to the EU.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) UK PRIME MINISTER THERESA MAY SAYING: "We have made progress on Northern Ireland where Mr Speaker the EU have been working with us to respond to the very real concerns we had on their original proposals." Although exactly what the alternative is is not yet clear.

And with the UK and EU hoping Wednesday's meeting Paves the way for an agreement by November... Time is running out.

SOUNDBITE (English) IG SENIOR ANALYST, CHRIS BEAUCHAMP, SAYING: "You could easily imagine a scenario where that last minute deal making just goes completely awry and everyone falls out and that is very negative for markets." That outcome is being planned for says the European Commission.

The German Chancellor too weighing in..

Saying clinching a deal is looking more difficult.

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