Taoiseach meets with Theresa May in Austria

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar held a bilateral meeting with UK Prime Minister Theresa May in Austria this morning.

Brexit discussions between the pair took place at the informal EU meeting in Salzburg.

The Taoiseach was joined at the meeting by Minister for European Affairs, Helen McEntee.

He described it as a very good meeting.

Efforts to avoid a return of a hard border in Ireland, when the UK leaves the European Union, is a key stumbling block in discussions.

Mr Varadkar says although he hopes a no deal scenario can be avoided, preparations for that eventuality continue.

"I had a very good meeting this morning with Prime Minister May and her team.

"Time is running short. There's proposals for another summit in October and then in November.

"Ireland is a country that obviously wants to avoid a no-deal scenario, we want to avoid a no-deal Brexit but we are preparing for that."

At a dinner last night, Mrs May said that there would be no second referendum and no delay to the withdrawal date in March.

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz is hoping a deal can be made.

"No deal and a hard Brexit would be difficult for Europe but it would be terrible for the UK," he said.

"The reason why we as European Union and we as Austrians would like to have a compromise is that we think that it is better for both."

Digital Desk

More on this topic

Michael Clifford: Is Boris Johnson the man for the moment?Michael Clifford: Is Boris Johnson the man for the moment?

Hard Brexit ‘not a realistic expectation’, says Ray O’RourkeHard Brexit ‘not a realistic expectation’, says Ray O’Rourke

Brexit ‘will present a tsunami of building opportunities’Brexit ‘will present a tsunami of building opportunities’

Johnson and Corbyn clash on Northern Ireland in TV head-to-head election debateJohnson and Corbyn clash on Northern Ireland in TV head-to-head election debate