Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his Irish counterpart Leo Varadkar will meet for talks later to discuss the UK’s Brexit proposals.

Downing Street said the meeting was to allow “detailed discussions” on the process of securing a deal.

Mr Johnson has said he remains “cautiously optimistic” about a deal.

But on Wednesday EU leaders accused the UK of putting forward untested ideas, adding that progress towards a new deal had been limited.

A similar sentiment was expressed on Tuesday by Mr Varadkar, who suggested it would be “very difficult” for the UK and the EU to reach a Brexit agreement before the 31 October deadline.

The meeting between the two leaders will take place in the north-west of England, with Mr Johnson still insisting the UK will leave the

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