Finally, Britain kicks off Brexit negotiations with EU

"As I head to Brussels to open official talks to leave the EU, there should be no doubt - we are leaving the European Union, and delivering on that historic referendum result", Davis said.

Brexit negotiators will discuss Monday Britain's financial obligations to the European Union as the long, complicated and potentially perilous process of the United Kingdom leaving the bloc finally gets underway.

The proposed deal would see the DUP back the Conservatives in votes on the Budget and on any confidence motion while other matters would be negotiated on an issue-by-issue basis.

In this context, both the United Kingdom and the European Union, following a period of disputes and mutual threats in regards to the terms of withdrawal, now seem to have a much softer and more consistent position on the outcome of the Brexit negotiations. But one Brussels source said Britain has not handed in a single "position paper" of what it wants from the talks.

The newspaper quoted another former minister as saying: "If she weakened on Brexit, the world would fall in. all hell would break loose".

- Winter/spring 2017/18 - If talks are proceeding to plan, negotiators can be expected to be meeting regularly to iron out remaining issues and identify the points of difference to be settled by political leaders at the highest level.

The Chancellor Philip Hammond weighed into the debate on Sunday, as he said that the Government is sticking to its plans to leave both the single market and customs union.

Opponents describe that as a "hard Brexit".

She is seeking an arrangement with the Democratic Unionist Party in Northern Ireland.

"The main concern is going to be that if there is a Conservative-DUP deal, then can the British government continue to play the role of a honest broker in the restoration of a Northern Ireland executive?" said Simon Usherwood, senior politics lecturer at Surrey University.

While Britain's economy has shown unexpected resilience since the Brexit vote, there are signs of weakness.

Her said: "No deal would be a very, very bad outcome for Britain, but there is a possible worse outcome and that is a deal that is deliberately structured to suck the lifeblood out of our economy over a period of time".

Mr Hammond said he would not agree to a deal that would "destroy" Britain. Talks on Britain's future relationship with the bloc are to be held back until later in the year.

Those issues are Britain's exit bill, estimated by Brussels at around 100 billion euros ($112 billion), the rights of three million European Union nationals living in Britain and one million Britons on the continent, and the status of the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland.

Brexit Secretary David Davis has said Britain will seek "a deal that works in the best interests of all citizens" in Brexit talks getting under way in Brussels.

The Times also reported that party members who had campaigned to keep Britain in the European Union were likely to have a candidate lined up to replace May, with interior minister Amber Rudd the likely option.

Still, Johnson called on people to look at the more distant future.

After days of uncertainty, the Government announced that the State Opening would now take place on Wednesday June 21 - two days later than originally scheduled.

Vanessa Coleman

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