EU Reportedly to Crush UK With Billions in Brexit Delay Punishment

No Majority in British Parliament for Second Brexit Referendum: Reuters Analysis

The United Kingdom's tortuous crisis over European Union membership is approaching its finale with an extraordinary array of options including a delay, a last-minute deal, a no-deal Brexit, a snap election or even another referendum.

Earlier, EU's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said that Britain will not get a post-Brexit transition period unless the House of Commons ratifies the divorce package.

But May's entreaty fell on deaf ears among lawmakers whose support she needs.

The House of Commons overwhelmingly rejected the deal in January, primarily because of concerns over arrangements for the Irish border.

"The instrument has legal force, it complements the withdrawal agreement without reopening it", Juncker said, adding Leo Varadkar, the prime minister of Ireland, would back it.

The spokesman said the government's motion that will be debated and voted on would be published later on Monday.

Parliament rejected May's deal by 230 votes on January 15, prompting her to return to Brussels in search of changes to the so-called Irish backstop - an insurance policy to prevent the return of a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

The joint UK-EU statement in the non-binding political declaration commits both sides to develop new technologies at the border to replace the need for the backstop by December 2020.

Mr Coveney said the government had worked for months with European Union partners to try provide the assurances and clarifications sought by its British counterpart to secure the deal, but the heavy defeat was in line with predictions in the days running up to the vote. It is irritated, too, that Britain is seeking changes to an agreement that Ms.

Ms. May said the new wording "will guarantee that the European Union can not act with the intent of applying the backstop indefinitely". Economists say it could cause huge upheaval, with customs checks causing gridlock at United Kingdom ports, new tariffs triggering sudden price increases and red tape for everyone from truckers to tourists.

Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald meanwhile said: "The British Parliament voted by a landslide to reject the Withdrawal Agreement and Theresa May's latest proposals".

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Britain s main opposition Labour Party also came out against the agreement.

"The attorney general has confirmed that there have been no significant changes to the withdrawal agreement despite the legal documents that were agreed last night", Labour Brexit spokesman Keir Starmer said. "The government's strategy is now in tatters".

That appeared unlikely after Cox's assessment.

Other EU nations welcomed the overnight agreement, and urged British politicians to seize the chance to back the deal and ensure an orderly departure.

If her deal is defeated, May has said she will give lawmakers a vote on Wednesday on leaving without a deal on March 29.

German EU affairs minister Michael Roth, called it "a far-reaching compromise". "There is no alternative".

Mrs May said: "The deal we've negotiation is the best and only deal available".

"I have got to say that if you look at what the prime minister has said so far it seems to fall short of what she, herself, had promised".

Cutting tariffs on imported goods would ease the hit to British consumers from an expected jump in inflation in the event of a no-deal Brexit which would probably cause sterling to tumble and make imports more expensive.

"We have an opportunity now to leave on March 29 or shortly thereafter and it's important we grasp that opportunity because there is wind in the sails of people trying to stop Brexit", Hunt told the BBC.

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