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Brexit: EU offer ‘unacceptable’ as trade talks continue


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image captionBoris Johnson and Ursula von der Leyen met in Brussels on Wednesday

Post-Brexit trade talks have gone through the night as the UK and EU enter a critical day – with leaders set to decide whether a deal can be done.

Both sides have warned they are unlikely to reach an agreement.

The terms offered by the European Union continue to be “unacceptable” to the UK, according to a government source.

Boris Johnson is expected to speak with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen at lunchtime after agreeing the Sunday deadline this week.

If the two sides have not come to an agreement, Mr Johnson and Mrs von der Leyen will decide whether to abandon negotiations or continue them beyond the deadline.

Speaking to Sky’s Sophy Ridge programme, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the ability of getting a deal rests with the leaders, saying: “What ultimately is required at this 11th hour is moving the political logjam.”

He said the UK “can’t close the door” on future talks after Sunday, but there is now a “very high bar” to continue, adding: “We are not there yet”.

Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) Micheál Martin said he believed a no-deal scenario “would be very bad news for all of us” and “an appalling failure of statecraft” on both sides.

He told the BBC’s Andrew Marr the fact talks had gone overnight gave him “hope” there would be agreement, and called for the teams “with any bit of energy we have left [to] focus on negotiating a deal”.

And speaking to the same programme, Labour’s former leader Ed Miliband said no deal “would be disastrous for the country”, adding that it would be a “disgrace” for the PM not to agree one.

He said: “[Mr Johnson] has been cavalier with our national interests and is playing Russian roulette with jobs and livelihoods of people up and down the land.”

What are the two sides stuck on?

The main sticking point in the talks is how close the UK should stick to EU economic rules in the future.

The EU is determined to prevent the UK from gaining what it sees as an unfair advantage of having tariff-free access to its markets – not paying taxes on goods being bought and sold – while setting its own standards on products, employment rights and business subsidies.

Fishing rights is another major area of disagreement,

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