UK’s PM Truss resigns after government plunges into chaos

(Update 2: Adds detail throughout)

London, Oct 20 (EFE).- The United Kingdom’s newly-appointed prime minister Liz Truss on Thursday announced that she would resign after less than two months in office.

The Conservative leader gave a statement outside her official Downing Street residence in central London to cap off a turbulent week in UK politics in which she lost the support of her party.

“Given the situation, I cannot deliver the mandate on which I was elected by the Conservative Party, I have therefore spoken to His Majesty the King to notify him that I am resigning as leader of the Conservative Party.”

She said her party’s top brass had agreed to hold a leadership vote within the next week to find her replacement, and that she would remain in her post until the process is completed.

The main opposition Labour Party, which is riding higher than the Tories in opinion polls, has called instead for a general election.

“After 12 years of Tory failure, the British people deserve so much better than this revolving door of chaos,” Labour leader Keir Starmer said in a statement.

“The British public deserve a proper say on the country’s future (…) We must have a chance at a fresh start.”

Truss took over as prime minister on September 6 following the resignation of Boris Johnson, whose government was hit by a series of scandals over illegal lockdown parties.

Johnson’s departure triggered a leadership race in which Truss, backed by the party’s right-wing faction, saw off competition from former finance chief Rishi Sunak.

The early stages of Truss’ tenure, which is set to be the shortest of any PM in UK history, were overshadowed by the death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8 and the period of mourning that followed thereafter.

Major cracks began to appear in late September when her former finance chief, Kwasi Kwarteng, unveiled his tax-slashing mini-budget, which prompted a volatile reaction in the markets and caused the pound to slump amid concerns over how the government would fund its plan.

Last ditch U-turns by the government were fruitless, and Kwarteng was gone by October 14, replaced by the comparatively moderate Jeremy Hunt, a former health secretary.

Already frail, the UK government entered a tail spin this week culminating Wednesday with the resignation of the home secretary Suella Braverman, a botched effort to enforce party discipline in a parliamentary vote and allegations of senior lawmakers manhandling and bullying junior MPs.

By Thursday morning, a growing number of Tory MPs were publicly calling on Truss to go.


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