Brexit: EU Stands By Deal, But UK PM Wants Further Talks

Collection StoriaPolitics

The EU is "united" over the negotiated Brexit deal, the bloc's chief negotiator Michel Barnier says, after the British prime minister, Theresa May, said she wanted to reopen it.

May is expected to continue talks with the EU after MPs backed a plan to renegotiate her Brexit deal, reports the BBC.

MPs voted 317 to 301 in favor of changing the backstop plan – the bit of the deal designed to avoid the return of Northern Ireland border checks.

But Barnier said the EU stood by the existing withdrawal agreement.

"The EU institutions remain united and we stand by the agreement we have negotiated with the UK," he said.

Meanwhile, the employers' group, the CBI, said businesses were likely to accelerate their plans for a no-deal Brexit.

Carolyn Fairbairn, head of the CBI, said: "I don't think there will be a single business this morning who is stopping or halting their no-deal planning as a result of what happened yesterday.

"The amendment feels like a real throw of the dice."

The prime minister has her weekly head-to-head with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn from noon and is then due to meet him later for talks, after MPs backed an amendment rejecting the idea of a no-deal Brexit.

He had previously refused to meet May unless she ruled out a no-deal Brexit herself.

At the moment, the UK is due to leave the European Union at 23:00 GMT on March 29, with or without a deal.

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