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British PM Theresa May calls for Conservatives to unite on Brexit

04 October 2018

Mr Johnson yesterday urged Mrs May to "chuck Chequers" in his speech to about 1,500 party members at a fringe event at the conference in Birmingham.

She said: "I think the reason why so many people are turned off by Brexit is because they are being fed a diet of negativity - whether it's infighting, Brussels, being disrespected by people over there".

May used a punchy speech to lay down a challenge to her detractors, a day after her rival Boris Johnson trashed her Brexit plan and challenged her authority with a crowd-pleasing speech of his own. "At the same time we are training up British people for jobs of the future", said May, cited by BBC. As March 2019 draws nearer, the British premier, if she does manage to stay on, will have to bite the bullet at some point and decide between a soft Brexit that would split her party and a hard Brexit that would split her country.

Just six months before Britain leaves on March 29, negotiations with the European Union have ground to a halt and May is caught between Brexiteers like Johnson and those who want to keep close economic ties with the bloc, Britain's biggest trading partner.

The Prime Minister said the spending review next year would set out more investment for public services if MPs back the agreement she secures from Brussels.

Observers will keep a close eye on whether she makes any reference to that calamitous performance, which led to speculation over how long she could last as Conservative leader.

"We can not outsource our conscience to the Kremlin", she said.

On Wednesday, May was keen to show she was in charge of the Brexit talks.

Arlene Foster speaks during day three of the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham
Image Arlene Foster says the PM's silence on the backstop has created a 'vacuum'

But Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) on Tuesday rejected the idea outright.

On the final day of her party's annual conference, May sought to rally members by addressing their concerns that the Conservatives are becoming increasingly directionless under the weight of Brexit, urging them to look to a brighter future. Foster to "confront" her party's stance on equal marriage.

In her crucial conference speech, the PM will make a direct appeal to mainstream Labour voters disillusioned by Jeremy Corbyn's left-wing agenda to switch to the "decent, moderate, patriotic" Tories.

However, she conceded that immigration policy could be affected by Britain's future trade deals.

Theresa May waves after giving her keynote address on the fourth and final day of the Conservative Party Conference 2018 at the International Convention Centre in Birmingham, U.K., on October 3, 2018. But it remains the position of the European Commission that in order to avoid any checks on the land border, Northern Ireland will have to remain within the EU's single market and customs union.

Britain's governing party is deeply divided over the country's impending departure from the European Union, with pro- and anti-EU camps both criticising the prime minister's negotiations with the bloc.

DUP leader Arlene Foster has said her party's red line against any Brexit deal that treats Northern Ireland differently from the rest of the United Kingdom is "blood red".

Britain will bring in a salary threshold for highly skilled workers' visas as part of its post-Brexit immigration system, interior minister Sajid Javid said on Tuesday.

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British PM Theresa May calls for Conservatives to unite on Brexit