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Migrant crisis and defence on agenda as May meets EU leaders

Britain will continue to help tackle Europe's migrant crisis after Brexit, Theresa May has told EU leaders today.

The prime minister made the announcement after using one-to-one talks with fellow leaders in Malta to insist she wants a "new, positive and constructive" relationship with the EU while remaining a "reliable partner" after Brexit.

At the summit, Mrs May also announced a £30 million fund to protect vulnerable migrants from freezing conditions and the threat of people-trafficking and sexual violence.

Defence will also be high on the agenda at the gathering in Malta's capital Valletta, and Mrs May is expected to tell her counterparts they must boost spending following her talks with Donald Trump on his attitude towards Nato.

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EU leaders embrace plan to 'stem illegal migration flow'

Tusk announced the agreement met by EU leaders at a press conference in Malta on Friday Credit: APTN

European Union leaders have announced that they will be embracing a plan to "stem illegal flows into the EU" as part of "a sustainable migration policy" to ensure effective control of Europe's external border.

Speaking at a summit in Malta on Friday European Council President Donald Tusk said the 28 countries in the Union had agreed to "work with the IOM to step up voluntary returns from Libya to countries of origin" as well boosting training, equipment and support to the Libyan coast guard.

The agreement was reached less than 24 hours after Italy and Libya reached a deal which called for more support for the Libyan Coast Guard and the "humanitarian repatriation" of migrants, with a possible economic deal in the pipeline.

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