DUP MP: We are heading for no-deal Brexit

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All pet owners are now being told to ensure they have the correct health protection documents in place for the possibility of a no deal Brexit.

But notes passed to the BBC suggest that ministers are not where they wanted to be, and had even hoped to review the Brexit divorce deal today, and announce decisive progress this week.

Under the deal, the European Union would accept that regulatory checks on goods can be carried out in factories and shops rather than at the border, the Times said.

The backstop arrangement would come into force should a future EU-UK trade relationship fail to avert a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Irish premier Leo Varadkar has dealt a blow to British hopes of a breakthrough in Brexit talks, warning he will not accept a deal that gives the United Kingdom unilateral power to halt "backstop" arrangements for the border with Northern Ireland.

"From social policy to the environment, from agriculture to industrial standards to immigration, when Brussels says "Jump", the British answer will be 'How high?'" he said.

The Prime Minister said any agreement will be dependent on an "acceptable" framework for future relations in areas like trade and security, expected to be covered in a separate political declaration.

"We are being asked to choose between the break-up of the Union - at least for economic purposes - or the subjugation of the whole country", said the Uxbridge MP. "We need to stop before it is too late". Under this plan we surrender control to Brussels.

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I urge all pet owners who wish to travel immediately after 29 March 2019 to consult with their vet as soon as they can.

However, a Downing Street spokesman said the intention of both the United Kingdom and the Republic is that the backstop should only be temporary.

Pet owners living in Northern Ireland could be forced to pay hundreds of pounds in veterinary fees and wait up to four months for paperwork before they can travel across the border to the Republic with their dog.

"While we too hope the Northern Ireland backstop will never be required to be used, it will be required to be written down in legal text".

"While the United Kingdom should aim to conclude the Withdrawal Agreement as soon as possible, this would not be done at any cost".

Today we are giving practical and straightforward advice for people who wish to travel to Europe with their pets after we leave the European Union in the unlikely event of a no-deal situation.

"He recalled the prior commitments made that the backstop must apply "unless and until" alternative arrangements are agreed."
A Downing Street spokesman described Mrs May's conversation with Mr Varadkar as "constructive", adding: "They agreed that the intention was that the backstop should only be a temporary arrangement and that the best solution to the Northern Ireland border would be found by agreeing a future relationship between the United Kingdom and the EU".

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