#Brexit: Progress of the UK's negotiations on European Union withdrawal report published

GETTYDonald Tusk has tabled a discussion at the summit on backing the UK in the stand-off with Russia

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EU27 citizens arrive in Britain during transitional period will have same rights with citizens arriving before the Brexit, said the deal.

The agreement comes hours before the EU's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier and UK Brexit secretary David Davis meet in Brussels.

He said he hoped negotiations on the UK's future relationship with the European Union - including a free trade agreement - could now start "as soon as is possible. we need to get on with this now", adding that it is set to be "the biggest, most comprehensive, most effective trade deal ever".

The draft agreement said: "With respect to the draft protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, the negotiators agree that a legally operative version of the "backstop" solution for the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland...should be agreed as part of the legal text of the Withdrawal Agreement, to apply unless and until another solution is found".

Investors had largely expected Britain to secure a transition agreement at Thursday's European Union summit, but concern remained that a deadlock over the Irish border would derail a deal.

Mr Coveney said that it would take "years" to agree a free trade deal given the complicated areas it covers, from aviation to food to financial services, but he hoped a framework agreement would be place by October or November which will set the parameters to agree a free-trade agreement in the future.

The crucial meeting of European Union heads of government meant to sign off the withdrawal agreement starts on Thursday, and people familiar with the negotiations say they are still talking.

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"So while there is as yet no agreement on the right operational approach, we know what we need to do, and we're going to get on with it". We did. People questioned whether we would get agreement now. So they are talking about a purely political agreement which would not have legal force.

The "backstop" agreement means that Northern Ireland will remain aligned to European Union regulations after Brexit unless another solution is found that will prevent a hard border.

British efforts to create divisions between the remaining countries have yielded few returns so far, despite ministers' frequent trips to national capitals.

He said that negotiators, working day and night recently, had agreed on "a large part of what would constitute" the draft legal treaty governing Britain's departure.

Barnier went on to describe today's agreement as a decisive step, but warned that "we're not at the end of the road" and added that there is a lot of "important work to be done" on the Irish border. The Committee says that is hard to see how a Brexit deal covering everything can be negotiated in the time that remains and the Government should consider whether a limited extension to the Article 50 period is needed.

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