European Union pushes for October Brexit agreement, but threatens no deal

EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier background is kissed by European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker before a meeting at the European

"Everybody shared the view that while there are positive elements in the Chequers proposal the suggested framework for economic cooperation will not work", he said.

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May addresses a press conference at the end of the EU Informal Summit of Heads of State or Government at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg, Austria, on September 20, 2018.

She flatly rejected a European Commission backstop proposal for Northern Ireland to remain within the EU customs area after Brexit, arguing that this would draw a border down the Irish Sea.

"If we feel that we are able to finalise and formalise our deal in November, I will call this extraordinary meeting, but not as an emergency but as a punchline of effective negotiations before October and during our October EU council meeting", he said.

- French President Emmanuel Macron said leaders of the Brexit campaign who told British voters it would be easy were "liars" and leaving the European Union was "not without costs".

The Sun went much further: "EU Dirty Rats - Euro mobsters ambush May", it said alongside a mocked up picture of French President Emmanuel Macron and European Council President Donald Tusk cast as American gangsters with guns.

The negative headlines indicate the extent of the divergence in perceptions between London and the capitals of the EU's other 27 members on the future of Brexit. She insisted that her proposals - the so-called Chequers plan - is the only option left.

However, she would probably face a challenge within her party soon after Brexit as few Conservative lawmakers think she can win a national election.

"If there is no agreement on a deal that is acceptable to the United Kingdom, then we're preparing for no deal", she said at the news conference after the summit in Austria.

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May waits to greet her Maltese counterpart Joseph Muscat to 10 Downing Street in London ahead of talks Monday Sept

In a letter to opposition leaders at Westminster, Nicola Sturgeon yesterday called for the Brexit timetable to be extended in the event that no deal is reached, to "avoid an economic cliff edge".

Some Brexiteers say those proposals would ensure the EU kept control over swathes of the British economy, and thus run counter to the spirit of her manifesto pledge to leave the EU Customs Union and the Single Market.

"We stand ready", she said.

"It was clear today that we need substantial progress by October and that we then aim to finalize everything in November", said German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

After her briefing with Tusk, May told reporters there was still "willingness to do a deal" on both sides of the negotiation.

This would keep Northern Ireland under EU economic oversight if London and Brussels can not agree a trade pact to keep UK-EU borders open after a transition period ends in 2020 - an idea that Mrs May and a small party in the province that props up her minority government oppose.

"If all conventional roads lead to a hard no-deal Brexit, the notion of Parliament exerting control and forcing another referendum on us would begin to look not wholly fanciful", Peston wrote in the Spectator.

Sterling gave up earlier gains and briefly hit the day's lows on Wednesday at $1.3098 after the Times reported that Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May had rejected an improved offer from European Union chief negotiator Michel Barnier on the Irish border issue.

May says she can not accept having customs checks within the United Kingdom.

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