Tory group appointed to discuss Irish backstop options

Cold War plans to evacuate Queen 'revived if Brexit leads to riots'

Britain's labyrinthine crisis over European Union membership is approaching its finale with an array of options including no-deal Brexit, a last-minute deal, a snap election or a delay.

An emergency plan to relocate the royal family has been revived in the event of riots breaking out in London following a no-deal Brexit result next month.

Asked how she could convince the people of Northern Ireland to accept a Brexit deal without a backstop, she added: "I'm not proposing to persuade people to accept a deal that doesn't contain that insurance policy for the future".

May came out against such an extension earlier on Tuesday, The Guardian reported.

'The UK government will not let that happen, ' she said.

May said she would seek a pragmatic solution when she tries to reopen talks with Brussels though Brexit-supporting lawmakers in her Conservative Party have warned they will vote against her deal unless there are substantial changes.

"What Parliament has said is that they believe there should changes made to the backstop".

UK Prime Minister Theresa May in Belfast.

May plans to meet with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Brexit negotiator Michael Barnier to discuss the backstop. "But, of course, there is room, if used intelligently, there is room enough to give further clarifications and further interpretations".

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Theresa May is in Northern Ireland today meeting all five main parties to find a way forward on the Irish border backstop.

Attorney General Geoffrey Cox last week attempted to originate a "Plan D" Brexit deal in which leading Eurosceptics would form a "joint interpretive instrument" guaranteeing a time-limited backstop.

The plans would include Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh moved out of London to a secret location, which The Sunday Times said it has agreed not to disclose. "While the commission's position is clear, we are waiting to see what the prime minister has to say".

Following Cabinet, the Prime Minister traveled to Northern Ireland to deliver a speech aimed at reassuring residents and businesses that the government was committed to avoiding a hard border on the island.

One minister told the Times that while May had to pay "lip service" to the plan, it could not work because: "It doesn't protect the Good Friday agreement, it isn't practical for business and it is not negotiable with Europe".

Britain, Ireland and the European Union want to avoid physical checks on the border between Ireland and the British province of Northern Ireland that ceased with the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.

Warnings of the consequences of a no-deal Brexit intensified last week as several multinational firms, including Airbus and Ford said jobs could suffer with an unfavourable negotiating outcome.

The row comes as the prime minister sets up a new committee of Conservative MPs created to work on "alternative arrangements" to the backstop.

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Arlene Foster speaks at the DUP annual party conference in Belfast, Northern Ireland, November 24, 2018.

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