UK's May pleads for support, says Brexit deal is nearly done

British Prime Minister Theresa May arrives for a working dinner of EU leaders

Under party rules May needs to win the support of just over half - 158 - to win a vote of no confidence, but many believe that she may not be able to continue as prime minister if more than 100 MPs were to vote against her.

May's most recent attempt to break the deadlock - her suggestion that the United Kingdom could extend the transition period "for a few months" if the United Kingdom needed more time to solve the Irish border conundrum - was met with fury by Tory MPs, who accused May of unnecessarily delaying Brexit while preparing to hand over more money to the EU.

Theresa May says only 5% of the withdrawal agreement is left to negotiate with Brussels.

The EU proposed a backstop that would mean Northern Ireland staying in the EU customs union, large parts of the single market and the EU VAT system, while the rest of the United Kingdom left.

Reference to a UK-wide customs union arrangement would be included in the text of the UK's withdrawal agreement, RTE's Brussels correspondent Tony Connolly said.

The letters come as displeasure by some party members to the government's stance on Brexit negotiations grows.

May's backstop counterproposal is for the United Kingdom as a whole to stay in a customs union with the EU. "I see any extension, or being in any form of backstop, as undesirable".

Verhofstadt added that the Irish border remains the biggest issue, but told a committee in Strasbourg he was confident a deal could be agreed before the European Union summit in December.

Hundreds of thousands of supporters of the European Union began marching through London on Saturday (20 October) as part of what organisers say will be the largest ever demonstration to demand that the British government holds a public vote on the terms of Brexit.

She said if Karen Bradley is suggesting that a Brexit outcome opposed by one community is unacceptable, "then the same logic should apply for those of all political persuasions and none who voted to remain".

The prime minister is scheduled to make a statement on Monday afternoon, after intense criticism from the Tory right for appearing to have made no progress other than indicating at last week's European summit that she was open to extending the post-Brexit transition period.

This news comes less than 24 hours after it was reported that May had 72 hours to save her job.

She called on MPs to "hold their nerve" as the United Kingdom entered the final stages of the negotiations, and she rejected calls for a second referendum on a Brexit deal.

Several Conservative Brexit MPs as well as opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn asked pointed questions - which were not answered - about how much extending the transition period would cost the UK.

Downing Street told CNN it would not be commenting on Mercer's interview.

Baker had been planning to launch a rebellion against the government by proposing an amendment to the Northern Ireland bill which was to go before parliament tomorrow but has dropped his stance on May's reassurances.

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