United Kingdom media: May 'humiliated' after European Union trashes her Brexit plan

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte labelled the Brexit negotiations "a balancing act" and the leaders will have further opportunities to thrash an agreement out when they meet again in Brussels on October 18 and again in mid-November.

The French President's comments were backed up by the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, who said May's Brexit plan will "not work".

At a summit in Austria on Thursday, EU leaders told Mrs May her proposals for a future economic relationship were unworkable, claiming they would undermine the single market.

"I do not accept that".

European Union leaders refused to give ground to Britain's Theresa May on Thursday, warning that her Brexit plan is unacceptable even as she offered to come up with new proposals for the Irish border.

They are playing hardball in the final weeks before a deal must be struck if it's to be ratified by the European Union parliament and all member states' legislatures before Brexit happens on March 29, 2019.

Nigel Dodds, deputy leader of Mrs May's DUP minority government allies, said the events in Salzburg provide "more evidence of the unreasonable and inflexible approach of the EU" and said: "The UK Government must demonstrate a resolute determination not to be bullied".

Speaking of the Instagram post, he said: "I think that is quite insulting actually".

France's president Emmanuel Macron said the EU's backstop should be "precisely preserved" in any agreement.

He said while there were "positive elements" in the Chequers plan, the European Union could not accept any proposal which threatened the single market.

But just minutes after he spoke, May insisted that her Brexit plan was the "only serious and credible" proposal on the table. The entire Brexit project was sold to the British people by "liars" who immediately fled the stage, unwilling to see their project through.

Mrs May set out her proposals for the key issue of cross-border trade after a Chequers summit in July, but it has been fiercely criticised by some Brexiteers who say plans for a "common rulebook" on goods would compromise the UK's sovereignty.

"It was a good and fearless step by the prime minister", Macron told reporters.

"We want avoid a 'No Deal Brexit, ' but we are preparing for that".

The French said May's proposals "are not acceptable as they stand, particularly in the economic realm" because they "don't respect the integrity of the single market".

"Brexit is a choice made by the British people and a choice that was pushed by certain people who predicted easy solutions", Macron said, referring to the Britain's June 2016 Brexit referendum campaign. "And what's more, they left the next day so they didn't have to handle it", he added.

The political turmoil has sparked growing calls in Britain for a re-run of the 2016 Brexit vote - calls echoed by both the Maltese and Czech leaders in Salzburg.

"What we want to avoid is any new barriers to the movement of goods, any new barriers to trade, any new barriers to the movement of people", Varadkar said.

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