European Union warns Brexit Britain: 'The clock is ticking'

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The European Union's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier has warned that little progress has been made on the main issues in negotiations between the EU and United Kingdom since March. "The clock is ticking", said Roth at the meeting with his fellow diplomats in Brussels.

"We are happy to be flexible if the British government comes forward with some new thinking, but what we are not flexible on is the outcome", Coveney said.

During a meeting of ministers from the remaining European Union 27 countries, "Mr Barnier informed us that since 23rd of March no significant progress has been made", Bulgarian Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva told reporters.

"We need now to be making substantial progress, but that is not happening".

"The June deadline is the deadline that must be seen as the ultimate deadline" to find a way to avoid a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland and allow progress in Brexit talks, Le Drian said.

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Barnier said the "two key points where there is a risk of failure" is the Irish issue, and the governance of any future Brexit deal, which Britain says must be out of the hands of the EU's top court. "What is worrying us in particular is the Northern Ireland question where we expect a substantial accommodation from the British side".

She was sceptical about UK Prime Minister Theresa May's idea to use smart border technology to enable an open border between the EU and the UK even if the latter leaves the customs union.

May's spokesman said London was working on two options for post-Brexit customs cooperation. "Our citizens and our businesses on both sides of the channel need more security and predictability for the future". Within the it trade with the EU after Brexit should be carried out under the same conditions, but London will be able to begin trade negotiations with countries outside the EU, for now, remaining a member of the EU, he has no right.

The deal could include regular British-EU foreign policy talks, cooperation on military and aid missions, cooperation on defence projects and intelligence sharing, Barnier said.

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