Can May cling on to Chequers plan?

Video Matthias Schrader EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, arrives at the informal EU summit in Salzburg Aus

Amid reports that she had taken a tough line on the negotiations, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said Thursday that May had been "interesting" and "polite".

Donald Musk said that: "The suggested framework for economic cooperation will not work".

A Number 10 staffer urged the EU to "evolve" its Brexit position following news Mrs May would have just ten minutes to appeal to European leaders.

Britain and its European Union partners have failed to secure a breakthrough in Brexit talks largely because of seemingly intractable divisions over the best way to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland.

In response, May said Britain was preparing to leave the bloc without an agreement on the terms of its departure unless there is a proposal it deems acceptable. Tusk, meanwhile, said that the upcoming October summit would be the "moment of truth" for reaching a deal, and that "if the conditions are there" another summit would be held in November to "formalize" it.

In an interview with the Daily Express, she said, 'My answer to the People's Vote is that we've had the people's vote - it was the referendum - and now we should deliver on it.

At a news conference at the conclusion of the summit, Mrs May struck a defiant tone, saying she had always expected negotiating "tactics" to be used during the course of the Brexit process.

The backstop 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 May and a small party in the province that props up her minority government oppose.

May could be forgiven for looking like thunder at her post-summit press conference.

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"On the economic partnership, there is no solution that will resolve the Northern Ireland border which is not based on the frictionless movement of goods", she said. That plan "remains the only serious and credible proposition on the table", she said.

Reporters said May was shaking and looking visibly nervous as European leaders rejected her Brexit plan.

"If you want to make a deal, both sides will need to try to find a compromise", he said.

On Thursday morning, Malta's Prime Minister Joseph Muscat claimed there is an "almost unanimous" backing among leaders for Britain to have a second referendum.

The Prime Minister had hoped to win the leaders of the EU27 over to her plans at a dinner in Salzburg on Wednesday evening, but it seems her pleas fell on deaf ears.

In remarks likely to fire up Brexiteers campaigning for the government to "chuck Chequers", he added the proposal conceived at the prime minister's countryside retreat was "not perfect".

This makes his comments at the Salzburg press conference - to the effect that "the suggested framework for economic cooperation will not work" and that the United Kingdom has to make substantial movement on its position in time for the October European Council - mark a very hard blow to May's plans. "Now is the time for the prime minister to reset the negotiation and take Tusk's March offer of a free trade plus deal".

European Union leaders say that is "cherry-picking" on the part of Britain, which would be able to go its own way in services and on other issues such as the freedom of movement of labour.

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