Theresa May demands respect from European Union in Brexit negotiations

It comes after European Union leaders said her Chequers plan would not work, during a summit in Salzburg.

In an unexpected appearance in front of Downing Street, Mrs May said the two side "remain a long way apart" after yesterday's summit in Salzburg, and called for Brussels to show the United Kingdom "respect".

"As I have already said, this is unacceptable. The UK expects the same".

May said Friday that Britain would set out alternative plans dealing with the thorny issue of the Irish border, "that preserves the integrity of the UK".

Speaking of May's proposals, Merkel said, "You can't belong to the single market if you are not part of the single market, but you can develop a lot of creativity to find practical, good, close solutions".

"Humiliation for May" read the front-page of The Times, while the pro-EU Guardian led with a similar headline: "May humiliated as European leaders tell her: your Brexit plan won't work".

'At this late stage in the negotiations, it is not acceptable to simply reject the other side's proposals without a detailed explanation and counter proposals.

"Until we do, we can't make progress".

And she promised the people of Northern Ireland that, if there was no deal, the Government would "do everything in our power to prevent a return to a hard border".

'Anything which fails to respect the referendum or which effectively divides our country in two would be a bad deal and I have always said no deal is better than a bad deal.

'We need serious engagement on resolving the two big problems in the negotiations.

"We stand ready", she said. British officials had been hoping for warmer words from them at a summit in Salzburg, Austria to bolster the premier as she prepares for what is likely to be a contentious Conservative Party conference in a fortnight.

Newspapers led their front pages with a Reuters picture showing May, dressed in a red jacket, standing apparently aloof and alone from a mass of suited male European Union leaders.

The tone of some of their comments, particularly the irony of European Council President Donald Tusk, left May exposed at home as she heads into what is expected to be a tumultuous annual conference of her Conservative Party from September 30. "The Tories have spent more time arguing among themselves than negotiating with the EU".

Dealing with the European Union is only part of May's problem.

In response to May's statement, the Confederation of British Industry and other business bodies said they wanted to see constructive dialogue, not rhetoric.

It's worth noting that the Brexit referendum - much like any important political issue - completely divided Great Britain. Put their sharp elbows and their personal ambition away and just let the Prime Minister do her job and go into bat for the country and bring home a deal. To deny its legitimacy or frustrate its result threatens public trust in our democracy.

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