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'UK and EU are as far from agreement to replace backstop as ever', writes Robert Peston

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is greeted by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker Credit: PA

Cutting through all the noise (Stéphanie Riso departure, Jean-Claude Juncker and Boris Johnson's warm words about wanting a deal), it is crystal clear that the UK and EU are as far from agreement to replace backstop as ever.

Multiple sources tell me that Johnson’s “non paper” proposals to keep open border on island of Ireland are seen in Brussels and EU capitals as an utter waste of time, and that Johnson is as far away as ever from what the EU regards as a possible “landing zone”.

There will be one last push, one last chance, after Tory conference.

But till then it is full steam ahead with no deal preparations on both sides.