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Principale » United Kingdom vote a gamble that could complicate Brexit: Europe leaders

United Kingdom vote a gamble that could complicate Brexit: Europe leaders

13 Juin 2017

For a General Election ostensibly called because of Brexit, discussions were limited to which leader was trusted to deliver it, rather than what "it" would look like.

May's party took the most parliamentary seats - 318 - in the UK's snap election that she called in April, but it failed to secure enough support to form a majority government, falling short of the required 326 parliamentary seats.

"We will continue to work with our friends and allies in the Democratic Unionist Party in particular".

May is expected to form the new government after talks with the DUP next week, only days before the country's historic Brexit negotiations with the European Union start on June 19. "And I am sorry for all those candidates and hardworking party workers who were not successful, but also particularly sorry for those colleagues who were MPs and ministers who contributed so much to our country and who lost their seats and did not deserve to lose their seats", she said in a televised interview from Downing Street.

"The market wants more clarity now in terms of who is going to be Prime Minister, what form the government is going to take and ultimately how all that feeds through into upcoming Brexit negotiations", said currency strategist Lee Hardman in London. "Politicians must act responsibly, putting the interests of the country first and showing the world that the United Kingdom remains a safe destination for business". Ironically, by virtue of the fact they increased their numbers, Sinn Fein has lowered the amount of seats required for a working majority. This did not help May, who, in her previous role as interior miniser for six years, had overseen cuts in the number of police officers. The Liberal Democrats, the most pro-EU of the parties, only won 12 seats.

Many senior Conservatives say May should stay, for now, to provide stability.

Chancellor Philip Hammond, meanwhile, is reported to have told the Prime Minister that she needed to put "jobs first" in negotiating a new deal with Brussels, in comments seen as a coded attack on her focus on controlling immigration.

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Should May depart from office, she will become the second Conservative head of government in a row, following David Cameron, to step down.

The Conservatives could be forced to compromise to win DUP backing.

However, Mrs May insisted that, as the leader of the largest party in the new parliament, she had a duty to act in the "national interest" and lead the country through the Brexit negotiations starting in ten days' time.

Although the DUP backed Brexit, its leader Arlene Foster has spoken against a "hard Brexit" and against a hard border with the Republic of Ireland where people and goods would be subject to checkpoints.

Jeremy Corbyn vowed to lead Britain out of the European Union as he insisted Labour is "ready any time" for another general election.

A hung Parliament - where there is no overall victor - has happened six times in Great Britain, occurring in 1909, 1929, 1974, 2010 and 2017.

May's co-chiefs of staff, Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill, handed in their resignations on Saturday following the disastrous election, called by May to strengthen her position ahead of talks to leave the European Union, but which in the end left her weakened.