A look at Britain's Great Repeal Bill for Brexit

A Government spokesman said: "It is clear both sides wish to approach these talks constructively, and as the Prime Minister said this week, wish to ensure a deep and special partnership between the United Kingdom and the European Union".

Some 3.3 million European Union citizens now live in Britain and about 1 million Briton live in the rest of the EU.

Therefore, according to Hollande, "the (two-year) talks must at first be about the terms of withdrawal, dealing especially with citizens' rights and obligations resulting from the commitments made" by the UK.

The official said that "even with the best of efforts, it will not be possible to negotiate all those details" in two years.

Tusk said there would be no parallel discussions about Britain's exit and its future relationship with the European Union but the negotiations could move to a second phase if there was "sufficient progress" in the exit talks.

He asserted that the process formally notified on Wednesday by May in accordance with the will of the British people will not begin with the negotiation of future UK-EU relations, as London would have wished for.

Tusk ruled out the suggestion that there was an inherent threat in British Prime Minister Theresa May's departure letter Wednesday, which some felt hinted that Britain would end security cooperation with continental Europe unless it gets a good Brexit deal.

"We really are moving forward now".

He also insisted that Britain's commitment to European defense and security is "unconditional" and "not some bargaining chip in any negotiations" over Brexit.

"Starting parallel talks on all issues at the same time, as suggested by some in the United Kingdom, will not happen", Tusk said, while adding that the European Union could assess as early as this autumn that Britain had made "sufficient progress" on the exit terms in order to open the second phase of negotiations, on future trade.

Because of the sheer number of laws and the limited time allotted, lawmakers will be called to delegate authority to Prime Minister Theresa May and her Cabinet to change some laws without a detailed debate or vote in Parliament.

Those include paying tens of billions of euros and giving residence rights to some 3 million EU citizens in Britain, the proposed negotiating objectives distributed by EU summit chair Donald Tusk to Britain's 27 EU partners showed.

The head of the rotating European Union presidency, Joseph Muscat, said citizens in Britain and other European Union nations should not be used a "bargaining chips".

Muscat said the Brexit negotiations will be tough but "it will not be a war".

In the draft guidelines obtained by the Associated Press, it says that first the European Union and Britain must "settle the disentanglement" of Britain from the European Union but added that "an overall understanding on the framework for the future relationship could be identified during the second phase of the negotiations under Article 50".

And when it comes to the U.K.'s land border in Ireland, which is key to the Northern Ireland peace process, Tusk's draft guideline says that "flexible and imaginative solutions will be required".

  • Leroy Wright