Published On: Tue, Mar 12th, 2019

BREXIT LIVE: 'There is NO alternative!’ – EU leaders demand Britain BACKS May's deal


The Prime Minister insisted on Monday evening she has secured “legally binding” changes to her Brexit deal which ensure the Irish backstop cannot be made permanent. Following a late night dash to meet European commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in Strasbourg ahead of the crunch meaningful vote in the House of Commons later today, Mrs May said she has now delivered what Parliament asked her to do. At a joint press conference with Mr Juncker, she added she “passionately believed” her Brexit deal addressed the concerns raised by MPs who feared the backstop would keep the UK indefinitely locked in a customs arrangement with the EU.

But EU leaders have warned MPs to now get behind Theresa May’s deal, warning there will be no further negotiations.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte wrote on Twitter: “Pleased with the agreement between @JunckerEU and @theresa_may.

“An orderly #Brexit is crucial for both the EU and the UK.

“I hope that the House of Commons will support the agreement reached by Theresa May. There is no alternative.”

During the joint press conference with Mrs May on Monday night, Mr Juncker also fired a warning to MPs currently opposing the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal.

He said: “There will be no new negotiations. It is this.

“In politics, sometimes you get a second chance. It is what we do with the second chance that counts. Because there will be no third chance.

“There will be no further interpretation of the interpretations and no further assurances on the reassurances.

“Let us be crystal clear about the choice – it is this deal or Brexit might not happen at all.”

Follow Express.co.uk’s live blog for updates below:

8:30am update: ‘Government’s Brexit fudge fools nobody!’ – Independent Group

Independent Group MP Chris Leslie has hit out at at the Government after Theresa May said she has secured legally binding changes to her Brexit deal around the Irish backstop.

He wrote on Twitter: “They can’t reconcile the irreconcilable objectives of ditching Single Market & Customs Union, while keeping Irish border open and frictionless.”

The 11 former Labour and Tory MPs have tabled an amendment to the motion to be debated, calling for an extension to Article 50 so Parliament can agree the terms of a People’s Vote.

8:25am update: ‘We’re very hopeful Brexit deal will go through’ – Ireland

Irish Transport Minister Shane Ross said: “I think everybody here is hoping that it goes through the House of Commons tomorrow,” he said.

“I think that’s what we’re hoping for.

“We’re very hopeful that it will go through.”

8:20am update: ‘We have done everything possible’ – European Parliament President

European Parliament President Antonio Tajani said he hopes “common sense will prevail”.

Mr Tajani met with Theresa May in Strasbourg on Monday night.

He tweeted: “We have done everything possible to reassure the United Kingdom. We look forward to a positive vote in the Commons.”

8:10am update: Farage urged Trump to back no-deal Brexit in meeting – report

Nigel Farage met Donald Trump earlier this month to discuss why the US President should back a no-deal Brexit, according to a report in the Daily Telegraph.

The conversation took place at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington.

Mr Farage told the newspaper: “I was talking to him about Vietnam, where he had said that a bad deal was on the table so sometimes you have to walk. That was the exact quote from Trump.

The former Ukip leader compared Brexit negotiations to Mr Trump’s recent denuclearisation summit with Kim Jong-un in North Korea.

He added: “I said in the case of Vietnam that no deal was better than a bad deal and I gave my opinion that the same principle applied to Brexit.

“I think if you read the comments from his ambassador in London, I don’t think it takes much reading between the lines.

“This American administration firmly believes in the nation state, not supranational structures and this administration are hugely keen on the defence, security and indeed business relationships that exist between our two countries.

“And I think it’s fair to say they see Brexit as a great opportunity.”



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