Dominic Raab is the new Brexit secretary

David Davis

Theresa May and Angela Merkel were all smiles together today amid signs that a breakthrough could be close in Brexit talks.

The remarks will encourage Mrs May after she put her premiership on the line to force her "third way" Brexit plans through Cabinet last week.

Much will depend on European reactions to May´s plan and she is due to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel later on Tuesday at the Western Balkans Summit in London.

In a statement, Johnson savaged May's strategy, accusing her of allowing an optimistic Brexit vision to become clouded by a failure of ambition. "It should be a chance to do things differently", adding "that dream is dying, suffocated by needless self-doubt".

That makes negotiating a deal with the European Union very hard: The bloc has said that Britain can't pick and choose the "four freedoms" (free movement of goods, capital, services, and people) and have an "a la carte" Brexit.

The Chequers agreement "stands as a shattered truce, a sticking plaster over the Cabinet's cracks in this Government", Mr Corbyn told the Commons.

"With her Government in chaos, if she clings on, it's clear she's more interested in hanging on for her own sake than serving the people of our country", he said. "His replacement will be announced shortly".

"Now is the time to rally behind the Prime Minister and give her our full and total support".

The value of the British pound dropped on global markets after Johnson's announcement, having risen after the announcement Friday that a Cabinet deal on Brexit had been agreed.

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He said: "Two years to come to a position".

The MP for Aylesbury campaigned to remain in the European Union.

But as Foreign Secretary in May's government, he was prone to gaffes and criticized for not being on top of his brief.

Opposition politicians were quick to capitalize on May's troubles. "We wanted to be talking about the future economic partnership".

But Mrs May has insisted that her proposals are the only way of protecting the economy and preventing a hard Irish border, while at the same time scrapping free movement and allowing the United Kingdom to strike new trade deals.

This resilience was evident at the 1922 committee of Conservative MPs in Parliament on Monday night where her party greeted her with a traditional banging of desks, albeit a far less thunderous ovation than at previous such meetings.

And Tory MPs in the Black Country and Staffordshire have leaped to her defence over the controversial Brexit deal, which has angered many of those in the pro-Leave camp.

May told the House of Commons on Monday that her program - which would allow the free movement of goods, but not services - is the "right Brexit " because it would make it possible to avoid checks at the border between the republic and Northern Ireland.

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