London: After a year and a half of negotiating with the European Union — and fighting with itself — the UK government on Wednesday backed a deal to allow Britain's orderly exit from the bloc, and paint the outlines of future relations.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said that the Cabinet agrees on a draft Brexit deal with the European Union after an 'impassioned' debate. 

EU negotiator Michel Barnier says the draft deal is a decisive step toward concluding Brexit talks.

Prime Minister Theresa May's fractious conservative government agreed on a deal that solves the key outstanding issue — how to ensure a frictionless border between the UK's Northern Ireland and EU member Ireland after Brexit. The "backstop" plan involves keeping the UK in a customs union with the EU until a permanent trade treaty is worked out.

The draft divorce agreement between Britain and the European Union has two parts: a legally binding withdrawal agreement, which runs more than 580 pages, and a looser political declaration on future relations.