The summit outcome in Brussels was, as usual, a compromise: the Brexit deadline has been extended to 31 October. Some countries, like Germany, wanted a longer delay. Others, like France, desired a shorter one.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said it took the EU27 a few hours to "bounce around" the options before they plumped for the end of October.

Mr Varadkar described British Prime Minister Theresa May’s plan, on how she will secure Brexit, only as "adequate".

Nevertheless it was enough for EU leaders to agree on the deadline extension.


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Asked if this was "the last chance" for the UK, Mr Varadkar  disagreed - a further indication that the EU would continue to be flexible if the UK appeared to be progressing its Brexit plans.

In the build-up to the summit there had been reports of the possible inclusion of a clause demanding good behaviour by the UK for the duration of any extension.

However, no such clause appeared in the final communique.

But, despite the summit deal, the threat of a no deal still remains. All eyes remain on London to see if MPs at Westminster can avoid that happening.