Boris Johnson has been desperately trying to piece together a Brexit deal that will get the approval of EU leaders, following unsuccessful talks with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on Monday. But it appears the Prime Minister has now come up with an alternative to the Irish backstop that he plans to present to Brussels, according to ITV’s Robert Peston. Mr Johnson is proposing a new four-part plan, which requires the approval of Ireland’s Leo Varadkar.
The Prime Minister’s Brexit deal seeks a unified single market for agriculture between Northern Ireland and the Republic, to ensure that cross border flows of livestock and food is not hindered.
It also proposes that customs and limited unobtrusive goods standards checks take place on the island, but away from the border itself.
Thirdly, Mr Johnson proposes no customs union with the EU for the UK or Northern Ireland alone.
The final requirement asks for a “Stormont lock”, allowing the people of Northern Ireland to terminate the deal.
This proposal is likely to become a sticking point for EU leaders, as it would enable the citizens of Northern Ireland to unilaterally end the arrangement.
Mr Peston says the final part “is a must” for Mr Johnson.
The Prime Minister’s new Brexit deal hinges on the approval of Dublin, and there is no guarantee that Mr Varadkar would accept the new plan.
But even if the Irish Taoiseach does back the proposal, the EU still have to sign off to it.
FOLLOW EXPRESS.CO.UK FOR LIVE UPDATES:Boris Johnson's new Brexit deal has now been revealed (Image: Getty)
8.29am update: Juncker issues Brexit warning to MEPs
Speaking to the European Parliament this morning, Jean-Claude Juncker said the risk of no deal is "palpable", which sparked cheers from the Brexit Party MEPs.
The Commission chief promised he would work with the Prime Minister to secure a deal.
But he warned that Mr Johnson's ambition to quit the bloc "with or without a deal" on October 31 left a hard split a real possibility.
Mr Juncker insisted that a no-deal Brexit would never be the preferred choice of the EU and the UK would be to blame for any chaos.
8.22am update: Brexit Party MEP accuses mainstream media over lack of Brexit coverage (really?!)
Greetings to Belinda de Lucy, Brexit Parry MEP for the South East, who last night tweeted frantically (and slightly bizarrely) that the mainstream media won't be reporting on today's massive events in the European Parliament.
Calm down Belinda, we have our Europe editor Joe Barnes in Brussels and a team of reporters poised to ensure not even the tiniest nugget of Brexit news slips through the net.
As we do every day. Do try and keep up dear.
Belinda thinks there has been a lack of media coverage ahead of the debate and tweeted: “DAY of TRUTH- Tomorrow Brexit is being debated in EU Parliament. MSM [mainstream media] won’t report on THIS!!!”
Wonder if the Great British Public thinks there has been a lack of Brexit coverage in the mainstream media?
8.10am update: Boris Johnson fears Brexit plan will be leaked
Downing Street hit back at claims by senior EU figures that the Prime Minister has yet to explain the changes to the Irish backstop.
Government sources said EU negotiators were being “shown pieces of paper” giving the outline of the Prime Minister’s plans.
But sources acknowledged that Mr Johnson’s full blueprint may not be published until next month because of fears EU members would leak it and risk a row at the Conservative Party conference.