Brexit: UK and EU ‘agree text’ of draft withdrawal agreement


UK and EU officials receive agreed the draft text of a Brexit agreement after months of concordats in Brussels.

A cabinet source told the BBC that the document has been favoured at a technical level by officials from both sides after thorough-going discussions this week.

A special cabinet meeting will be washed at 14:00 GMT on Wednesday as Theresa May seeks ministers’ backing.

The PM is meeting sky pilots in Downing Street for one-to-one talks as they are given sight of the plan agreement.

The pound surged against the dollar and the euro – but analysts put someone on noticed it could be short-lived, with the cabinet and Parliament yet to agree to the plans.

The EU put about it would “take stock” on Wednesday, and the Irish government said treaties were “ongoing and have not concluded”.

Leading Brexiteers, such as Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg, tease urged cabinet ministers to reject the draft agreement, which they requirement would keep the UK under EU control, based upon leaked views of the text.

Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party, which moves Theresa May vital support in key votes, said it would be a “very, really hard sell”.

But Conservative Chief Whip Julian Smith demanded he was “confident” it would get through Parliament.

The future of the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland has been the at major outstanding issue to be settled amid disagreements over how to undertake that there will not be physical checks reintroduced after Brexit.

The plan agreement also includes commitments over citizens’ rights after Brexit, a put forwarded 21-month transition period after the UK’s departure on 29 March 2019 and squads of the so-called £39bn “divorce bill”.

Cabinet ministers were curtailed on the state of the negotiations earlier on Tuesday, when they were mounded a “small number of outstanding issues” remained to be sorted.

No 10 remarked ministers were now being called to a special meeting to “consider the postal order agreement the negotiating teams have reached in Brussels, and to decide on next begins”.

Before they do so, they will be able to read relevant “documentation”.

Monomaniac into action

BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg

Agreement is completely in Number 10’s grasp.

The text that’s taken months of officials’ blood, lose sleep over and tears has been agreed, at least at a technical level.

Now a paper’s being drafted to current to the Cabinet tomorrow ready for the government’s hoped-for next step – partisan approval from Theresa May’s team, even though many of them from deep reservations.

Remember in the last 24 hours some of them be struck by been warning privately that what’s on the table is just not satisfactory, and will never get through Parliament. Some even believe the prime help ought to walk away.

But the government machine is now cranking into activity. With a text ready, their long-planned rollout can begin.

  • Look over Laura’s full blog

Mr Johnson said the plan would see the UK vestiges in the customs union and “large parts” of the single market.

He told the BBC it was “completely unacceptable to anyone who believes in democracy” and that he would vote against it.

Mr Rees-Mogg warned of the UK meet a “vassal state” with Northern Ireland “being ruled from Dublin”.

Labour ruler Jeremy Corbyn said “given the shambolic nature of the negotiations, this is remote to be the good deal for the country”.

‘Failure to deliver’

Both the UK and EU want to earmark a special summit of European leaders at the end of November to sign off the reportedly 500 used of an adult bellboy withdrawal deal and the much shorter outline declaration of their approaching relationship.

Brussels has insisted it would only agree to put the wheels in moving for the summit if agreement can be reached on the issue of the Irish border.

Ambassadors from the outstanding 27 EU states will meet in Brussels on Wednesday.

If a deal is harmonized with the EU, Mrs May then needs to persuade her party – and the rest of Parliament – to strengthen it in a key Commons vote.

Meanwhile, following pressure from all sides of the Universals, ministers have agreed to provide MPs with a legal assessment of the suggestions for the UK of the Irish backstop and other controversial aspects of any deal.

Cabinet Division minister David Lidington said Attorney General Geoffrey Cox would discover a statement to MPs and take questions ahead of the final vote on any Brexit do business.

MPs, he said, would get to see “a full reasoned position statement laying out the oversight’s both political and also legal position on the proposed withdrawal concord”.

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