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Theresa May to finalise top team after election upset

13 Juin 2017

The PM's joint chiefs of staff Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill have resigned after Theresa May lost her majority in the election.

Mrs May was working on a Cabinet reshuffle, although the election result makes it less likely she will risk alienating colleagues by making wholesale changes as she can not afford to have disgruntled former ministers sniping at her from the backbenches.

One of the most senior figures in Mrs May's administration yesterday added to the impression of chaos by launching an outspoken attack on her "toxic" and "dysfunctional" Downing Street, accusing the unelected Ms Hill and Mr Timothy of bullying Ministers and sending "rude text messages".

That impression was underlined in a brutal account by Katie Perrior, the former No 10 director of communications who stood down in April on the day the general election was called.

Martin Selmayr, the powerful chief of staff to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, suggested the 37-year-old had been sacrificed by the Prime Minister so she can cling to power despite throwing away her House of Commons' majority.

He blamed a "unexpected surge in Labour support" for Mrs May's failed snap election gamble.

May's attempts to form a government with Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) appear to be taking longer than first thought, as Downing Street said Saturday negotiations are ongoing despite an earlier statement that a deal had been reached.

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Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, Home Secretary Amber Rudd, Brexit Secretary David Davis and Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon will also stay where they are.

Timothy said he accepted responsibility for his role in the Tory manifesto, criticised by many MPs.

But former leader Lord Hague, writing in the Daily Telegraph, warned against a leadership contest, saying: "Voters do not want further months of uncertainty and upheaval".

British Prime Minister Theresa May has appointed a new chief of staff following the resignation of her two top aides.

"I asked for a categoric assurance that if any deal or scoping deal was done with the DUP there would be absolutely no rescission of LGBTI rights in the rest of the United Kingdom, in Great Britain, and that we would use any influence that we had to advance LGBTI rights in Northern Ireland", said the MP, who is a lesbian.

He urged Tory MPs to "get behind" May but said nothing should be allowed to get in the way of the process of forming a government and beginning Brexit talks.

"And move to a consensus within the country about what it means and what we seek to achieve as we leave".

"We would be able to speak freely if they weren't around, and if they were around, you don't speak".