Brexit: May expected to meet Corbyn to tackle deadlock

Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media captionBarnier

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionBarnier"No-deal Brexit has become more likely

Some leading pro-Brexit figures denounced her intentions after she announced talks with Mr Corbyn would take place to try and find a solution for Brexit.

In either event, she said she would ask the EU for a further short extension to the Brexit date to hopefully get an agreement passed by Parliament before 22 May so the United Kingdom does not have to take part in European elections.

European Union leaders are planning to hold an emergency summit on April 10 to consider allowing a further delay to Brexit, which was pushed back from March 29 to April 12.

Sterling rose on Wednesday over hopes for a "softer" Brexit, hitting its highest level since March 28.

Barclay also did not rule out giving in to demands for a second referendum, later telling MPs: "I don't think we should have a second referendum because it takes us back to square one, is my personal view, but the prime minister will have discussions and we will see where they lead".

What is the prime minister's new plan?

"If the answer is Jeremy Corbyn, what was the question that Theresa May was asking the Cabinet?" he asked talkRADIO's Julia Hartley-Brewer.

'So we will need a further extension of Article 50 - one that is as short as possible and which ends when we pass a deal.

In an instant response, European Council president Donald Tusk tweeted: "Even if, after today, we don't know what the end result will be, let us be patient".

European Parliament Brexit co-ordinator Guy Verhofstadt, who had said he thought a no-deal Brexit was "nearly inevitable", welcomed Mrs May's offer of talks with Mr Corbyn.

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A cross-party group of British lawmakers will try on Wednesday try to rush through legislation in parliament to make such an outcome impossible.

Ahead of their talks, May and Corbyn said there would be no preconditions, but the leaders might well struggle to find a compromise position that can satisfy their own parties.

"This isn't a blank cheque", Barclay said.

Mrs May said she wanted to agree a new plan with Mr Corbyn and put it to a vote in the Commons before 10 April - when the European Union will hold an emergency summit on Brexit.

"Because the alternative then is to have to seek votes from the opposition benches because 35 of my own colleagues would not support the Prime Minister's deal".

"Labour has put forward our proposals to ensure there is a customs union with the EU, access to vital markets and protections of our standards of consumer, environmental and workers' rights", he said on Tuesday.

She had already promised to step down if her withdrawal agreement was passed by parliament, although that failed to persuade all her lawmakers to back her, and her overture to Corbyn has alienated some Conservatives still further.

For so long, Theresa May has been derided by her rivals, inside and outside, for cleaving to the idea that she can get the country and her party through this process intact.

The move angered Brexiteers in her party, including former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who accused her of "entrusting the final handling of Brexit to Labour".

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