UK's Brexit Secretary David Davis has resigned

British Prime Minister Theresa May sets out her Brexit plans as Brexiteer minister Penny Mordaunt watches on arms crossed during a Cabinet meeting at Chequers

Britain's most senior official in charge of negotiating the country's exit from the European Union resigned Sunday, accusing Prime Minister Theresa May of undermining Brexit with her plan to keep close trade ties with the bloc.

Peter Bone, a Eurosceptic MP allied to Mr Davis, told the BBC that he didn't see how the prime minister could get her Brexit plans through Parliament, and also that he couldn't see how she continue in her position if she didn't give into anger from the Conservative backbenches.

British media reported that junior Brexit minister Steve Baker had also stepped down.

However, he also reportedly threatened to resign from government on a number of occasions, most recently during talks to resolve a dispute with pro-EU Conservative lawmakers who wanted a greater say for parliament over the final Brexit deal.

The signs of progress after months of standstill were broadly welcomed by business groups, with the deadline for gaining a deal with the European Union rapidly approaching.

Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer said: "It is farcical that it has taken two years for the Cabinet to even attempt to agree a position on the basics of our future relationship with the EU".

Jacob Rees-Mogg, leader of the influential European Research Group of pro-Brexit Conservative MPs, warned that a common rulebook could make "trade deals nearly impossible" if it meant regulations would have to apply to any goods coming into the UK.

"In his resignation letter, Davis said the "'common rule book' policy hands control of large swathes of our economy to the European Union and is certainly not returning control of our laws in any real sense".

Some 61 per cent of the 1,225 respondents said that that proposal would be a bad deal for Britain, compared to 31 per cent who thought it would be good. Boris Johnson was furious he was given the 110-page document less than 24 hours before the Chequers summit.

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Jacob Rees-Mogg, the leader of a group of Brexit supporters in the Conservative Party, said Davis' resignation proved that their concerns were well-founded.

"I think for the first time we're seeing a very direct language which points to a much softer Brexit than I think some people have been commenting on and that has to be welcomed", Simon Coveney told national broadcaster RTE.

In a statement released late in the evening, she said the 26 cabinet members in attendance reached a "collective" agreement that would see the United Kingdom agree to negotiate a "common rulebook for all goods" in a combined customs territory.

"That is not something that this country voted for; it's not what the Prime Minister promised..."

"We need to make sure this is now a game changer for Brexit".

Meanwhile Backbencher Andrea Jenkyns said she was "awaiting the detail" of the plans before deciding whether to support calls for a leadership contest.

Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the opposition Labour Party, tweeted that the resignation "at such a crucial time" showed that May "has no authority left and is incapable of delivering Brexit".

You have helped to steer through Parliament some of the most important legislation for generations, including the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act 2017 and the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018, which received Royal Assent last week.

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