Brexit: Minister in 'meltdown' at end of five-hour cabinet marathon

Brexit: Minister in 'meltdown' at end of five-hour cabinet marathon

Reports suggested as many as a third of the 28 ministers attending the meeting in Downing Street voiced doubts about the deal.

She said there had been a "long, detailed and impassioned debate" on the Brexit deal.

'I firmly believe with my head and my heart this is a decision which is in the best interests of our entire United Kingdom'.

Pro-Brexit demonstrators on Whitehall outside Downing Street in London on November 14, 2018.

And Conservative Party MP Peter Bone, a leading eurosceptic, accused May of "not delivering the Brexit people voted for".

However, then the United Kingdom government faces a battle to win Parliament's backing on the divorce agreement, with some Tories already vowing to vote against it and the DUP's support being uncertain.The crucial leg of the Brexit negotiations follows months of wrangles, with transport minister Jo Johnson, his brother foreign secretary Boris Johnson and Brexit secretary David Davis stepping down over the issue.

"Is the Prime Minister aware that if the media reports about the European Union agreement are in any way accurate, you are not delivering the Brexit people voted for, and today you will lose the support of many Conservative MPs and millions of voters across the country?" asked Mr Bone.

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The ultimate outcome for the United Kingdom remains uncertain: scenarios range from a calm divorce to rejection of May's deal, potentially sinking her premiership and leaving the bloc with no agreement, or another referendum.

Former foreign secretary William Hague warned "ardent Brexiteers" that if they shoot down May's deal, it could lead to a change of government and a new referendum and "Brexit might never happen at all".

May will give a statement to the House of Commons.

If the Cabinet supports the deal, it still must be approved by leaders of the 28-nation EU.

Britain and the European Union are now set to hold a Brexit summit on November 25.

Then May will need to win backing from Britain's Parliament - no easy task, since pro-Brexit and pro-EU legislators alike are threatening to oppose it.

Northern Ireland would have special status under the proposals, meaning that some checks may be required between Northern Ireland and the rest of the country.

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In Boston, the town in England with the highest Brexit vote in Britain, residents agreed.

Under backstop arrangements created to keep the Irish border open, if no trade deal is agreed by the end of the transition period in December 2020, a temporary "EU-UK single customs territory" would be established.

Such a vote could be held as early as today - when she will be presenting the deal to the Commons.

"If she decides to go against all of that, then there will be consequences", DUP leader Arlene Foster said, though she refrained from explicitly opposing the deal. In these circumstances, it is more important than ever that we are not faced with a false choice between a bad deal and no deal.

The party's Scottish legislators - including Scottish Secretary David Mundell, a Cabinet minister - wrote to May saying Brexit must mean "full sovereignty over domestic waters" and Britain must leave the EU's Common Fisheries Policy after Brexit. She still must secure approval of the deal in the British Parliament, where she faces open hostility over the plan from both the opposition Labour Party and members of her own Conservative Party.

The outline political declaration - which will be subject to further negotiation over the coming weeks - expresses an ambition to achieve zero tariffs and no quotas in EU-UK trade, something the officials said no other major economy had achieved. It is unclear whether she has the numbers.

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