David Davis leaves Brussels empty handed after meeting Michel Barnier

Theresa May leaves 10 Downing Street in London Britain

The EU has set out several objections to the UK's proposals, saying they would lead to a "hard border" in Northern Ireland.

The UK published its "backstop" plans last week, after a reported tussle over the wording between Mr Davis and Prime Minister Theresa May.

Brussels has issued its first take on the Brexit backstop proposals put forward by the United Kingdom last week, and it doesn't look good.

The European Union stepped up its warning to the United Kingdom that its proposal to remain temporarily aligned to the bloc's customs regime beyond 2020 won't prevent the re-emergence of checks along the 310-mile Irish border.

It concludes that the UK Government's backstop would not serve its central goal of avoiding a hard border.

Although the EU Commission insists the update published today outlines "issues for further discussion with our United Kingdom counterparts", the wording clearly seems to back Michel Barnier's original proposal - which was rejected by Theresa May back in February - while rejecting Westminster's latest effort.

It would come into force if a permanent solution to avoiding a hard border - through frictionless trade or technological solutions - hadn't been found by the end of the transition period in December 2020.

It was carefully crafted in an effort to appease her Brexit Secretary, David Davis, who had threatened to quit if there was no cut-off date.

Ultimately, Brussels concludes that the UK's position leaves "key questions unanswered", does not sufficiently deal with regulatory issues which would result in a hard border anyway, and is time-limited, but UK-wide.

It calls the plans a "complex and unprecedented arrangement for short duration".

The EU documents also claim the United Kingdom plans would lead to a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic because they do not cover regulatory checks.

Implications for trade are also raised in the document.

Is confusing on the scope of European Union trade policy applicable to the United Kingdom.

"Just after a meeting between David Davis and Michel Barnier, the Commission released a highly critical presentation asserting that the United Kingdom proposal would "lead to a hard border" in Ireland, because the plan says nothing about regulatory alignment essentially in the single market".

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