European Union calls out contradiction in Britain's Border fudge

For its own sake the EU must help Theresa May over the Brexit bridge

Writing in The Telegraph, the prime minister warned that the government "will not tolerate attempts" to block the Brexit bill, in an apparent message to Remain Tory MPs planning on voting against it when it returns to Commons.

"The unique situation on the island of Ireland requires specific solutions".

UK Brexit secretary David Davis asked Barnier to be flexible and move on to discussion on the future of the UK-EU relationship.

Although there would need to be "specific solutions" for the unique position of Northern Ireland "this can not amount to creating a new border inside our United Kingdom".

This all suggests that Ireland has wider support in seeking a clearer framework to avoid the return of a Border, before the Brexit talks progress.

European Union leaders will decide in December if Brexit talks have yielded "sufficient progress" on the key issues of the divorce bill, citizens' rights and the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

By deciding to no longer to seek membership of the single market and the customs union, Theresa May has already ruled out the softest versions of Brexit - such as the so-called Norway option which even some Leave supporters wanted.

It concluded that Britain must ensure "no emergence of regulatory divergence" from the rules of the EU single market and the customs union which are "necessary for north-south co-operation, the all-island economy and the protection of the Good Friday Agreement".

Davis, meanwhile, indicated he was not open to Northern Ireland staying inside the single market or customs union in order to solve concerns about a hard border with Ireland.

No new negotiating rounds were agreed, as concerns mount over a possible further delay in talks and a risk of no deal if talks don't progress in December.

The Irish issue, while one of the three divorce issues that needs to be settled in the first phase of talks, had taken a back seat as the United Kingdom argued that it was hard to find an agreement on the gnarly border issue until the future trading relationship was sorted out. "A key priority remains to preserve the sovereignty of our courts", he said.

"But we need to see flexibility, imagination and willingness to make progress on both sides if these negotiations are to succeed and we are able to realise our new deep and special partnership".

"The fact is that a political decision has been made, in this country, to maintain that there can be no going back", he will say.

A senior Government source said the British should not feel blindsided.

May added that the inclusion "in black and white" of the date Brexit will officially take place will ensure that the process can not be blocked. Democratic Unionist Party from Northern Ireland.

While the UK's exit bill has been widely seen as the most hard stumbling block, one EU source has told RTÉ News that the Irish question may turn out to be an even more hard issue as the deadline of the December EU summit approaches.

At the last round of talks, significant progress was made in terms of agreeing joint principles on maintaining the CTA between the United Kingdom and Ireland.

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