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Brexit is almost in “touching distance” as key EU deadlines

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By Michael Holden and Gabriela Baczynska

LONDON / BRUSSELS (Reuters) – A Brexit deal is almost within reach, Prime Minister Theresa Mays said de facto deputies Tuesday as Britain and the European Union tried to avoid missing a deadline for approval of divorce.

While officials choreograph the first recall of a sovereign state from the EU, it is still unclear if May can get a deal approved by the British Parliament.

“We are almost moving away now,” the Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington announced BBC Radio. Asked if he said he could say an agreement was possible in the next 24 or 48 hours, he said: “Still possible but not at all determined, I think it’s quite summing up. Cautiously optimistic.”

A British government source said a recall contract was closer than it had been on Monday after the negotiators worked late at night at the European Commission’s modernist Berlaymont building in Brussels.

Sterling, which has been said since it reached $ 1

.50 just before 2016 referendum vote for Britain to leave the EU, jumped almost 1 percent to $ 1,2972 $ .

Brussels wants to reach agreement on a draft agreement by Wednesday at the latest if there will be a summit this month to approve it, although few in Brussels seemed to be hoping a breakthrough could come this week. [L8N1XO3HK]

The EU and the United Kingdom need an agreement to keep trade between the world’s largest trading block and the fifth largest national economy.

But May has struggled to eliminate almost 46 years of membership without damaging trade or


Delaying the approval of an EU leaders agreement until the next scheduled summit on 13-12 December would move the schedule close to the British Parliament’s Christmas Eve, scheduled for December 20th-Jan.

May even raise the vote for the new year.

Can tell Tuesday’s members in their closet that good progress had been made, said a spokesman and added that a small number of outstanding issues remained.

It is unclear when the cabinet will be called to discuss a draft recall agreement with the EU, or the sketch of the future relationship.

But it is unlikely that intrusion into any deal will disturb the growing opposition to May at home: Brexit-supporting opponents fear that she is reporting to the United Kingdom to EU insanity.

Brussels’s diplomatic sources said that the block was trying to attract May to seal a deal this week and rubbed it later this month and feared that any delay would increase the chances of rejection from my ministers or parliament.

The European Commission has been stressed in May by developing emergency preparedness for a failure that is not decisive.


With less than five months to Britain, bordered on the EU, the so-called Northern Irish backstop is the biggest outstanding issue.

This is an insurance to avoid returning to checks on the border between the Northern Ireland Northern Ireland and EU member Ireland on a future trade relationship

However, an EU diplomat said the entire European single market and the citizens’ freedom to live Somewhere in it was at stake. “The issue of Ireland is not about Ireland itself, it’s just the tip of the iceberg,” said the diplomat.

“It’s about the single market and free movement – it’s no less about the future of the EU. If we release Ireland now, it’s shaking a long shadow in the future of the European Union.”

London’s proposal for a full British customs arrangement must ensure that Britain complies with EU state aid rules and competition, labor rights and environmental standards.

Also in the debate is the duration of the backstop. The EU does not want to let London terminate it unilaterally. London said backstop would have to be temporary.

By attempting to leave the EU while retaining the closest possible ties, May’s compromise plan has emerged for Brexiteers, pro-Europeans, Scottish Nationalists, the Northern Irish Party who proclaims its government and some of its own ministers.

“No one fooled by this theater. Delays after delayed delayed delay,” said former former secretary Boris Johnson. “An agreement will be reached and it will mean abandoning Britain.”

Johnson, a prominent Brexit campaigner who resigned from the maize government in July over his strategy, said the deal would make Britain a colony in the EU. 19659011] (Further reporting by Elizabeth Piper in London, writing by Guy Faulconbridge, editing David Stamp)

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