United Kingdom ministers under fire over 'threat' to European Union on security

Britain's Ambassador to the EU, Tim Barrow hand delivered a six-page letter from May to Tusk in Brussels to formally begin divorce proceedings.

Gabriel also said he expected Brexit negotiations to start from the end of May and reiterated that London would not be able to enjoy the benefits of the EU's single market while imposing its own controls on immigration.

The bill will repeal the European Communities Act 1972, ending the jurisdiction of EU law in Britain on the day the country formally leaves the bloc.

The prime minister now has two years to settle the terms of the divorce before it comes into effect in late March 2019.

He said: "What she said was that if we don't have a deal, it's not good for either side".

Britain is one of the top three users of Europol data while European nations also benefit from the information the UK brings from its long-standing "Five Eyes" intelligence sharing pact with the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Nine months after Britons voted to leave, May notified EU Council President Donald Tusk through a hand-delivered letter that the United Kingdom is quitting the bloc under Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon Treaty.

She said the Article 50 letter would give more clarity on Britain's strategy, and "on this basis, the 27 [other] member states and European Union institutions will define their interests and aims". "As you say, there may be some particular programs we want to be members of, that we wish to pay in order to be members of, because it will be in the national interest to do that and that's what will drive us". "But we must settle the accounts, no more, no less", Barnier said.

This first phase involves relatively small numbers to make sure the requisite licenses, technology and infrastructure are in place, while the next requires longer-term thinking on what their European business will look like in the future, which is when bigger moves might take place. The far-right candidate Marine Le Pen also aims to take France out of the European Union if she can not secure a return of significant powers and sovereignty from Brussels.

But she also reiterated her warning that failure to reach a trade deal would hamper security ties.

The white paper - Legislating for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union - will set out how the Government will deal with EU laws that can not be easily converted.

"Thrilled, because I know that at 12:30 today, we passed the point of no return".

  • Leroy Wright