Theresa May says will not agree Brexit deal 'at any cost'

Two similar letters have been penned to the Taoiseach in the last 12 months

Two similar letters have been penned to the Taoiseach in the last 12 months

At the regular weekly meeting in 10 Downing Streets, senior ministers discussed proposals for a "review mechanism" to ensure that the United Kingdom is not stuck indefinitely in a possible backstop arrangement created to avoid a hard border in Ireland.

The Prime Minister's spokesperson said ministers needed more time to consider possible mechanisms that will prevent the United Kingdom from being tied to the European Union through a backstop arrangement to prevent a hard border in Northern Ireland.

Downing Street later said there is no further cabinet meeting scheduled this week in order for ministers to reach an agreement on Brexit, although one could be held "at the appropriate moment".

Work is continuing on this, he said, adding: "Don't be under any illusions that there remains a significant amount of work to do".

The Irish border has proved the biggest obstacle to a deal, with both sides vowing not to reinstate a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland for fear of destabilizing a peace accord that ended decades of deadly sectarian violence.

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"I don't want to go into the details, we're willing to consider improvements to the backstop but we need to reach an agreement for this backstop and we need a genuine backstop, an operational backstop to the point".

A Brexit deal is close but not yet done due to differences over the Irish border, Britain and the European Union said on Tuesday as sterling see-sawed on contrasting perceptions of how hard it will be for Prime Minister Theresa May to clinch an agreement.

Christine Middlemiss, UK Chief Veterinary Officer, told the Daily Telegraph that owners should go to the vets as soon as possible to get their pet's documents in order if they want to travel to the European Union after Brexit day at the end of next March.

But Mrs May is expected to put pressure on ministers to agree to a different solution to the backstop disagreement, which she discussed with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar in an unscheduled phone call yesterday.

The backstop plan enraged the DUP, which is propping up May's Conservative government at Westminster, and the PM has since said she could "not accept" any deal that would require a customs border between the North and Great Britain.

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"Looks like we're heading for no deal", he tweeted.

Mr Matheson, speaking in Treasury questions, said: 'The Government's own figures demonstrate between a 2% and 8% hit on the broader economy on Brexit, so isn't it the case that there is no form of Brexit that won't have a massive impact on the public finances and therefore on public services?'

Hopes of a major breakthrough on Brexit have risen after Theresa May's cabinet edged closer to agreeing a deal with Brussels. This has turned into a mess that nobody voted for and it's only going to get worse.

But allies of the PM were cheered that Cox had warned his colleagues that they risked a no-deal outcome if they insisted on a hardline plan to allow the United Kingdom to unilaterally pull out of any insurance policy on Ulster.

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