John Bercow outlines three possible outcomes for Brexit

The Speaker of the British House of Commons, John Bercow, has said he cannot see the UK Parliament agreeing to leave without a deal on Brexit.

Mr Bercow told RTE's Late Late Show last night that he thinks the idea of crashing out without parliamentary authority is "intolerable".

However, he also stressed the unpredictability of what will happen in the run-up to the October deadline.

Mr Bercow said: "I think anybody who says with complete confidence, or even much conviction, 'I know what's going to happen' is either an extraordinarily clever person or a raging fool.

"It's all so unpredictable, the vicissitudes of fortune one day to the next it changes, there are terrible periods of pessimism and then all of a sudden people are upbeat and they say that there is going to be a deal, I don't know whether there will be or not."

He said he sees three possible outcomes for Brexit in the weeks ahead: a deal, Parliament approval for a no-deal, or the British Prime Minister asking for an extension.

Mr Bercow said: "That is what the law currently says must happen, that is what it explicitly stipulates if there isn't an agreement or an agreement to leave without an agreement, and everybody has to obey the law, because of that old English principle 'Be you ever so high, the law is above you'.

"And I am sure that point is not lost on anyone, including very senior ministers."

It comes as the European Union gave the green light for high-level Brexit talks to begin on proposals hammered out between the Taoiseach and the UK prime minister on Thursday.

The details of what they discussed are being kept highly secretive, but the chief EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier outlined them to ambassadors from the EU 27 on Friday afternoon.

It means the talks will enter the "tunnel" over the weekend – Brussels jargon for highly-secretive talks between small groups of officials, aimed at hammering out a deal away from prying eyes.