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03:19, 24 June 2017 Saturday
Update: 05:35, 11 June 2017 Sunday

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Pressure mounts on May to resign after election stumble
Pressure mounts on May to resign after election stumble

Two of PM Theresa May's chief aides resign after Conservatives lose their ruling majority in House of Commons

World Bulletin / News Desk

Despite her move to form a minority government, pressure is mounting on British Prime Minister Theresa May to resign after Thursday’s election results saw the Conservative Party lose its ruling majority in the House of Commons.

A snap survey on Saturday by the ConservativeHome website found 60 percent of party members saying May should step down.

Two of May’s chief advisers, Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill, resigned Saturday, falling on the sword for the poorly managed campaign that led to the ruling party losing its majority in parliament by taking 318 seats, eight short of a single-party government and 12 less than the previous elections.

May meanwhile apologized to Conservative members of parliament who lost their seats after the snap poll, which May had hoped would produce an expanded majority.

“I wanted to achieve a larger majority. That was not the result we secured. And I’m sorry for all those candidates and hard-working party workers who weren’t successful, but also for those colleagues who were MPs and ministers and contributed so much to our country and who lost their seats and who didn’t deserve to lose their seats,” she said.

May said after a brief meeting with the queen on Friday that the Conservatives will form a new minority government with the backing of 10 MPs from Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party (DUP). May needs 8 more seats to be able to form a government, as she expressed her intention to continue as prime minister.

Northern Irish unionists gave full backing to May for a new government, with party leader Arlene Foster saying they will contribute to the country’s “stability”.

Ahead of her coalition announcement, main opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said May's attempt to win a bigger mandate had backfired and also called on her to resign.

“The mandate she's got is lost Conservative seats, lost votes, lost support and lost confidence,” Corbyn told supporters in his Islington North constituency in north London.

“I would have thought that's enough to go, actually, and make way for a government that will be truly representative of all of the people of this country,” he added.

Labour won 261 seats on Thursday, up from 229, the best result for the party since the Tony Blair era and in the face of predictions that it faced a landslide defeat.

For her new Cabinet, May already said she will keep five key members, including Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

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 EU start on June 19.



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