The Labour leader said Theresa May’s negotiating strategy is leading the UK down the wrong path but when asked whether he would stop the split if he could, he said: “We can’t stop it.”
Labour members overwhelmingly backed leaving the door open to a second referendum at the party’s conference in September.
And activists campaigning for a final say on the divorce deal have been hoping Mr Corbyn will eventually cave to public pressure and support another vote.
But the Labour leader, who is a well-known Eurosceptic, today insisted Brexit cannot be stopped.
READ MORE: Jo Jonson quits Government over Brexit – leaving EU is ‘terrible mistake’
In an interview with German magazine Der Spiegel he said: “The referendum took place. Article 50 has been triggered. What we can do is recognise the reasons why people voted Leave.”
Asked whether he felt sorry for Mrs May given her “impossible task” of striking a deal with Brussels while trying to reconcile the Leave and Remain wings of the Tory party, Mr Corbyn said: “I am a decent human being, I feel sorry for anyone in distress.
“But the best way for anyone to alleviate distress is to take yourself away from the source of it.”
He said if he was leading the exit talks, Labour would be pushing for a new customs union deal with the EU which he said would protect UK jobs.
Follow Express.co.uk below for live Brexit updates:
Brexit news: Jeremy Corbyn has insisted Britain’s divorce from the EU ‘can’t be stopped’
9pm: A look forward to next week
Jo Johnson’s resignation and the DUP’s warning over her Irish border plans have topped off a difficult week for Theresa May on the Brexit front – but next week promises to be even tougher.
The Prime Minister is likely to meet with her Cabinet on Monday or Tuesday for crunch talks over the divorce deal.
Senior ministers have been invited to view the text of the withdrawal agreement already signed off with Brussels – said to be 95 percent of the deal – but a solution to the Irish border issue still has not been reached.
While Mrs May attempts to convince the Cabinet to back her plan, negotiations will continue to attempt to reach a compromise on the border ‘backstop’.
European Council President Donald Tusk said yesterday the final issues could be “maybe” be resolved in as little as five days but may take as long as a week.
Theresa May will attempt to convince ministers to back her Brexit plans next week
8pm: We don’t need a second referendum to deliver Brexit – just BACKBONE
Jacob Rees-Mogg has reacted to the departure of Jo Johnson, who warned Theresa May’s Brexit strategy would result in either EU vassalage or chaos caused by no deal.
But the prominent Brexiteer disputed Mr Johnson’s claim that a second referendum should be held.
Mr Rees-Mogg tweeted: “@JoJohnsonUK is right to resign over the Withdrawal Agreement which does not deliver on the referendum but creates a vassal state.
“It does not need a second referendum but backbone to deliver Brexit.”
7.10pm: Brexit ‘can’t be stopped’, Corbyn declares
Jeremy Corbyn has dented hopes for a second referendum by insisting Britain’s exit from the European Union is inevitable.
Mr Corbyn is a well known Eurosceptic but some campaigners pushing for a second referendum have been hoping for the Labour leader to change tack and back calls for a public vote on the final deal.
Asked by German magazine Der Spiegel if he would stop Brexit if he could, the Labour leader said: “We can’t stop it.
“The referendum took place. Article 50 has been triggered. What we can do is recognise the reasons why people voted Leave.”
DUP leader Arlene Foster said her party would vote against Mrs May’s Brexit plans as they stand
6.20pm: ‘More talks needed’ before Brexit deal reached
EU negotiators have dented hopes of an imminent breakthrough on Britain’s divorce deal, saying more work is needed before an agreement is reached.
Diplomats familiar with a briefing between the Michel Barnier’s team and envoys from member states said “more talks” are required.
Reports by European media this week suggested the impasse over the Irish border issue is close to being overcome and a deal could be signed off by EU leaders at an emergency summit later this month.
5.35pm: No second referendum under ANY circumstances
Theresa May has responded to Jo Johnson’s resignation and his calls for a public vote on the final deal by insisting there will be no second referendum.
The Prime Minister’s spokesman said: “The referendum in 2016 was the biggest democratic exercise in this country’s history.
“We will not under any circumstances have a second referendum. The Prime Minister thanks Jo Johnson for his work in government.”
Meanwhile, Boris Johnson has reacted to his brother’s departure as transport minister.
He wrote in a tweet: ”Boundless admiration as ever for my brother Jo. We may not have agreed about Brexit but we are united in dismay at the intellectually and politically indefensible of the UK position.”
“This is not taking back control. It is a surrender of control. It does not remotely correspond to the mandate of the people in June 2016.”
The two brothers campaigned on opposite sides of the Brexit debate in the run-up to the 2016 vote.
5.05pm: No deal is still better than a bad deal, says David Davis
David Davis has warned the withdrawal agreement on offer “looks like a bad deal”.
The Former Brexit Secretary said a hard Brexit which would see the UK fall back onto World Trade Organisation rules after the split would be better than accepting the Brussels’ terms.
Responding to reports that the EU is demanding continued access to British fishing waters and Theresa May has included a clause which would create a border down the Irish sea, Mr Davis said in a tweet: If reports are true regarding concessions on fishing and a border in the Irish Sea, then this is not the Brexit that people voted for.
“If the EU will not negotiate in good faith then we must assume that WTO is still better than what looks like a bad deal.”
Boris Johnson’s brother, Jo, has resigned as transport minister over Brexit
4.30pm: DUP warns it will vote AGAINST Brexit deal as it stands
Arlene Foster has threatened to vote against any Brexit deal which includes a Northern Ireland-specific backstop.
The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader said “no unionist” would be able to support Theresa May’s plans.
Negotiators are still working to reach an agreement on the Irish ‘backstop’ which would kick in to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland if no deal is struck.
But the DUP is committed to avoiding any deal which could result in Northern Ireland being treated any differently from the rest of the UK after Brexit.
And the party has interpreted a promise made by May in a letter that she would never let a division of the UK “to come into force” as an admission that such a clause would be included in a final deal.
Ms Foster said: “In other words, Northern Ireland will have a different regulatory system from the rest of the United Kingdom, and essentially there’s going to be a border down the Irish Sea.”
3.55pm: Jo Johnson QUITS over Brexit – leaving on May’s terms ‘will be a terrible mistake’
Boris Johnson’s brother Jo has resigned over the Government’s Brexit strategy and backed a second referendum giving the British people a say over the final deal.
Jo Johnson, who served as Minister of State for the Department for Transport, said it “will be a terrible mistake” if the divorce deal is finalised.
The MP for Orpington branded Theresa May’s Brexit vision “delusional” and said the split being proposed is nothing like what was promised before the referendum.
In his resignation statement, Mr Johnson, who backed Remain in 2016, said: “Britain stands on the brink of the greatest crisis since the Second World War.
“Given that the reality of Brexit has turned out to be so far from what was once promised, the democratic thing to do is to give the public the final say.”
Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones warned of damage to Welsh ports in the event of a no-deal Brexit
3.15pm: No-deal Brexit could hammer Welsh ports, warns Carwyn Jones
Leaving the European Union without a deal in place could be hugely damaging to ports in Wales, Carwyn Jones has warned.
The Welsh First Minister said 70 percent of trade between Great Britain and Ireland passes through Welsh ports like Holyhead and failure to strike a free trade agreement with Brussels could put that business at risk.
His warning came as Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar warned a no-deal Brexit could mean freight from Ireland bound for the continent may have to move through sea routes to French, Dutch and Belgian ports instead of the quicker “land bridge” via Britain to Calais.
Speaking at the end of the British-Irish Council summit on the Isle of Man, Mr Jones said: ”The last thing I would like to see is a hard border between Ireland and Wales.
“If there is extra bureaucracy, extra checks at Welsh ports, that will have an effect on the ports themselves and the road infrastructure leading into the ports, both of which are devolved.
“We run the ports and the roads.
“There is a danger, if we have a hard Brexit with no deal, that we end up having to pay a huge amount of money on the port and on the roads in order to accommodate the traffic that would be delayed there as a result of an imposition of extra controls.”
Harvey Gavin taking over from Katie Harris on live reporting.
2.45pm update: Nicola Sturgeon says Brexit highlights UK’s devolution weaknesses
Brexit has highlighted “real weaknesses” in the UK’s devolution settlement, according to Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
Ms Sturgeon said: “I will make no bones about the fact that the Brexit experience has exposed real weaknesses within the devolution settlement that will require them to be worked through and resolved along the way.”
2pm update: Hammond rejects Northern Ireland-only backstop
Chancellor Philip Hammond has insisted the UK cannot be split up.
Mr Hammond said to the BBC: “We’ve always said that we can’t accept the Commission’s proposal for a Northern Ireland-specific solution, because we are Unionists and we won’t agree anything which puts our Union at risk.
“So we’ve spent most of this year negotiating an alternative backstop, which allows us to give the European Commission the insurance policy that they are looking for without threatening to break up our Union.”
Nicola Sturgeon said Brexit highlights UK’s devolution weaknesses
12.40pm update: Irish Prime Minister says Brexit negotiations are at “sensitive point”
Ireland’s Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said a Brexit deal is possible within weeks.
Speaking at the British-Irish Council summit in the Isle of Man, Mr Varadkar said: “We are at a sensitive point in the negotiations.
“A successful outcome is not guaranteed but I think it is possible in the next couple of weeks.”
11.50am update: German Economy Minister “optimistic” about Brexit deal
Germany’s Economy Minister Peter Altmaier has said he is “optimistic” a Brexit deal can be made, in a major boost to Mrs May as she faces high pressure from the DUP as well as ongoing divisions within her own party.
Speaking in Berlin, Mr Altmaier said: “I am optimistic that a Brexit deal can be achieved and will be achieved.”
Ireland’s Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said a Brexit deal is possible within weeks
10.55am update: DUP piles pressure on Mrs May in row over Irish backstop
DUP minister Sammy Wilson has refused to confirm if the DUP would back key Budget legislation next week as the row over the Northern Ireland backstop escalates.
Asked by Ireland’s RTE radio whether the DUP would support the bill, Mr Wilson said: “We will be making our decisions on how we progress.”
“We are saying nothing … other than to say time and time again that there will be consequences if the government breaks its side of the bargain.”
Sammy Wilson accused Mrs May of a “total betrayal”
10.15am update: EU pushes ahead with no-deal preparations
The EU is refusing to halt its no-deal preparations despite a Brexit deal being within reach.
The bloc will continue to push its contingency plans until a deal is signed off by UK politicians and European Parliament.
An EU source said: “Even if we have an agreement and champagne is flowing over glasses, everyone happy with cheeky, red faces we don’t know if the deal enters into force.
“The withdrawal agreement still needs the parliamentary OK from the EU and UK parliaments.
“We will continue till March with our contingency work.”
Dominic Raab (right) is “furious” with David Lidington
9.45am update: Raab “furious” with May’s deputy David Lidington
Dominic Raab is “furious” with Theresa May’s deputy David Lidington over the Cabinet Office Minister’s attempts to push a softer Brexit in dealings with Ireland, it has been claimed.
Mr Lidington has been working with Ireland’s Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Foreign Minister Simon Coveney in the final stages of Brexit negotiations between the UK and EU.
But Mr Raab accused Mr Lidington of “going behind his back”, according to the Brexit Secretary’s allies.
One senior Conservative told the Sun: “Dominic is furious. He feels he is being undermined at every turn.
“The Government is being run by Philip Hammond, Greg Clark and David Lidington. And they all want to stay in the customs union.”
8.45am update: Culture Secretary denies PM will accept Northern Ireland-only backstop
Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright has insisted the Prime Minister would not accept a deal that includes a Northern Ireland-only backstop.
Speaking to BBC Radio 4, Mr Wright said: “Were there to be a border down the Irish Sea, as I’ve said and the Prime Minister has said, we wouldn’t accept a deal incorporating that.
“What’s important is we get a deal that satisfies our requirements – and by our requirements I mean the whole of the United Kingdom, including Northern Ireland.
“We don’t have that proposed deal yet. When we do we’ll be able to discuss it.
“There is no doubt we have understood the concern the DUP and others have expressed about a hard border down the Irish Sea, we share it, and we will not accept a deal that involves that component.”
8.00am update: UK and Irish leaders to meet at summit amid border tensions
Brexit is expected to be top of the agenda at a British Irish Council (BIC) summit later today.
Ireland’s Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Mrs May’s right-hand man David Lidington and Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon are among leaders attending the meeting, which takes place twice a year.
The BIC summit is the last before Brexit and it comes amid tensions over the Irish border.
Arlene Foster warned the leaked letter “raises alarm bells”
7.30am update: DUP slams “total betrayal” over Northern Ireland-only backstop
Democratic Unionist Party MP Sammy Wilson has accused Mrs May of a “total betrayal” over plans to include a Northern Ireland-only backstop in a Brexit deal.
It comes after a leaked letter from Mrs May to DUP leader Arlene Foster revealed the EU’s demands for a Northern Ireland-only backstop if the UK-wide arrangement breaks down.
Mr Wilson said to Sky News the Prime Minister is guilty of a “total betrayal” and had gone back on “the promises she made”.
And Mrs Foster warned the letter “raises alarm bells” for those who want a “proper Brexit for the whole of the UK”.