Theresa May made KEY Brexit admission during Belfast speech, claims transport expert

Labour MP Luciana Berger delivers a speech to the Annual Conference

"If the backstop is dealt with in the withdrawal agreement then, despite the fact we may have misgivings around other parts of the withdrawal agreement, we will support the prime minister because we do want Brexit to happen in an orderly and sustained fashion", she said.

She spoke with business leaders in Tokyo on Tuesday, telling them that despite the March 29 deadline and Brussels rejecting any renegotiation of the existing agreement, there was still time for Britain to reach some kind of arrangement with the bloc.

The plans, first devised in 1962 after the Cuban missile crisis and approved the following year, have now been revived by senior civil servants involved in contingency planning for Operation Yellowhammer, the battle plan for what happens in the event of a no deal when border arrangements with the European Union will be thrown into chaos.

With just 50 days to go until the UK's scheduled exit date from the European Union, Mr Swann said if Mrs May can not negotiate an extension and no deal is reached, then she must introduce direct rule for Northern Ireland.

British Prime Minister Theresa May has flown to Belfast to reassure the citizens of Northern Ireland that she is determined to achieve a Brexit deal that can avoid a return to a hard border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Has the prime minister killed off her best shot at keeping the Conservative Party intact?

"The worst-case scenario is no deal Brexit and in our opinion we should do what we can to avoid that, to look for some solutions, to be creative", he told reporters in Brussels on Monday.

"What parliament said is that they believe there should be changes to the backstop".

Mrs May's visit, which will include talks with businesses, comes as she prepares to return to Brussels to demand the reopening of the European Union withdrawal agreement.

Labour MP John McDonnell Shadow Chancellor speaks in Westminster in London
Labour MP John McDonnell Shadow Chancellor speaks in Westminster in London

Speaking during a trip to Japan, Ms Merkel said that "one has to be creative and we must listen to one another" on the border issue, adding: "But we must hear from Great Britain how they envision that".

The comment, which will anger Brexit supporters in Britain, was tweeted from his account as he spoke the words, indicating it was not an off-the-cuff remark.

"It is absolutely true that if we have a no-deal situation, there will be certain capabilities that we rely on for security with the European Union such as databases, arrest warrants, others, that of course will change", he said.

Meanwhile, former Northern Ireland first minister Lord Trimble is threatening legal action over the Irish backstop, which will prevent the return of a hard border.

Keen to avoid the economic disruption a no-deal Brexit would bring to Germany's economy, which slowed sharply a year ago, Merkel also values Britain as a like-minded partner and wants to keep its security expertise close at hand.

Mrs May told the Commons last week it was "a serious proposal that we are engaging with sincerely and positively".

It said that the economic damage caused by a No Deal Brexit would "have a damaging and divisive impact on many communities that museums serve".

Today she's in Northern Ireland meeting the different political parties, including the DUP - whose votes she needs in Parliament - who are totally opposed to the current version of the controversial backstop, as well as Sinn Fein, who are just as adamant that it must remain.

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