UK scrambles to salvage Brexit deal after Irish border hitch

British Prime Minister Theresa May's government is holding talks with its Northern Ireland political ally, in a bid to salvage a Brexit deal ahead of a deadline next week.

Britain and the European Union came close to agreement on key divorce terms, including how to maintain an open Irish border after the U.K. leaves the EU. But a deal was scuttled when the Democratic Unionist Party, which props up May's government, warned it would not give its backing.

British officials are trying Tuesday to reassure the DUP, a Protestant Unionist party that opposes any special deal to keep Northern Ireland's economy closely aligned with the Republic of Ireland.

U.K. finance minister Philip Hammond said the government remained "very confident that we will be able to move this forward."