Earlier on this morning the UK's permanent representative in the European Union informed the office of Donald Tusk, that it's the UK's intention to trigger Article 50 on March 29. "There was no further detail about exactly what the letter would say at this point".
"We want the negotiations to start promptly", Prime Minister Theresa May's spokesman told reporters.
Once those are in place, giving a negotiating mandate to the EU executive, the European Commission, chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier should be able to schedule talks with his British counterpart, Brexit Secretary David Davis.
"There is no change in our position". "It's not going to happen".
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The triggering of Article 50, the never-before-used mechanism for a country to leave the European Union, will set off a two-year negotiation in which Britain will have to agree with its 27 erstwhile partners on the terms of divorce.
Last week Nicola Sturgeon called for a second independence referendum between autumn 2018 and spring 2019 ahead of the Brexit process being completed.
"I have also been clear that as we leave the European Union I will work to deliver a deal that works for the whole of the UK", May said in a statement before the visit. We expect it will be a two-year process and we are confident that is what we will achieve. The spokesman said the United Kingdom government remained "confident" that the process could be concluded within the two-year timeframe, meaning that the United Kingdom would formally leave the European Union by the end of March 2019 - ending 46 years of membership.
There are restrictions under Article 50 on discussions on the terms of the exit and future relations, in the absence of a formal communication by Britain to the other members of the Union, about its decision to leave.