First round of Brexit talks to begin on Monday June 19

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- Philip Hammond, Britain's finance minister, says protecting the British economy should be the main goal of upcoming negotiations over the country's exit from the European Union.

Brexit negotiators will discuss Monday Britain's financial obligations to the European Union as the long, complicated and potentially perilous process of the United Kingdom leaving the bloc finally gets underway.

The Brexit negotiator asked London not to "waste time" and explained that it will take "several months to draw out the conditions of an orderly withdrawal, with hard and sensitive points of discussion".

Any deal Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party reaches to prop up British Prime Minister Theresa May must not interfere with devolution in the British province, Ireland's new prime minister said on Friday.

European Union leaders, who will meet May at a summit next Thursday, have been irritated by her repeated threats to walk out with "no deal" - even if most see that as a campaigning bluff given the chaos it would cause.

"We never put timescales on when we expect a deal to be done and I'm not going to start now".

Colum Eastwood, leader of the SDLP, Northern Ireland's second-largest Irish nationalist party, said his party had a "positive" meeting with the prime minister over her efforts to come up with a deal with the DUP.

On Brexit, Ms Foster said her party wanted to see "a sensible Brexit and one that works for everybody".

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Though on the surface, Thursday's meetings with Northern Irish parties were aimed at breaking the logjam in forming a new cross-party regional government in the province, May needs broader acceptance in the province of a Conservative-DUP deal.

The EU will keep the door open for Britain to return, but only on worse terms than it now has, European Parliament Brexit negotiator Guy Verhofstadt said Wednesday (14 June).

May's programme will most probably have to be watered down, dropping some of her preferred reforms to help get legislation through parliament and possibly having to give way to other ministers who have strong views over the direction of Brexit.

She has since said the timetable will remain unchanged but there is growing pressure on her to moderate the government's approach and favour maintaining close ties with the European single market. Since then there had been Assembly elections in March, followed by a series of negotiations, and then the British general election on June 8, which was again followed by talks on the DUP supporting the Conservative minority government in London.

Davis plans to go to Brussels on Monday to start the negotiations, which will reshape not only Britain's role in the world, but also that of a bloc praised for ensuring peace after World War Two.

European Commission deputy chief Frans Timmermans said Thursday (15 June) that he would welcome Britain back into the EU "with open arms" if it reconsidered its decision to quit the bloc.

Nigel Farage, UKIP, and the Brexit referendum may one day be counted among the saviours of the European Union.

The Conservatives have 317 MPs while the DUP have 10.

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