Angela Merkel urges speedy Brexit talks after UK election

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The Great British public has spoken. "We know when they must end", said Mr Tusk.

In the election the Conservatives won most seats, but short of winning enough for an overall majority.

On Twitter, Siegfried Muresan, spokesman for the European Parliament's largest grouping, the European People's Party, said, "EU did not want #Brexit, but has been prepared to negotiate it since past year".

Michel Barnier, the EU's chief Brexit negotiator, indicated on Twitter that the European Union was prepared to show some patience, making it clear that talks should not begin until the political situation had settled in the UK. European Union officials have warned talks shouldn't be delayed and have expressed their fear that with the government weakened by the election result the talks could become even more complicated.

Ireland's prime minister-elect Leo Varadkar said the election result was an opportunity for Ireland. "The mandate Theresa May sought for her extreme version of Brexit has been rejected", Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron told cheering supporters in a speech Friday. The Chancellor noted that parties should do it quickly, respecting the calendar.

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Security measures were heightened on Thursday as millions headed out to vote in the general election. Since the attack, 17 people have been arrested, 12 of whom have since been released without charge.

Britain's inconclusive election means it is more likely to opt for a softer Brexit in which it remains in the European Union's customs union, Irish appointed EU agriculture commissioner Phil Hogan said in a newspaper interview published today.

Brussels' chief negotiator Michel Barnier said Brexit talks could wait until the new government was ready.

Barnier sounded conciliatory: "Brexit negotiations should start when United Kingdom is ready", he tweeted.

But Redwood's argument strikes some as disingenuous. Mrs May called the snap election in order to secure a clear mandate for her vision of Brexit. The voters didn't give it to her - nearly 60 percent of those who voted Thursday rejected the Conservatives.

Osborne - who was sacked by May a year ago - has been critical of the prime minister repeatedly in recent days, calling her "a dead woman walking" on the BBC's Andrew Marr program.

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At the start of the campaign, she was enjoying poll leads of 20 points or more over the main opposition Labour Party. The arrangement with the DUP will make governing easier, but it makes some Conservatives uneasy.

"You can be in the single market but not be in the European Union", Osborne said.

He added, however, that anti-EU elements of May's Conservative Party might resist attempts to soften the party's tone. In pro-EU London, the Tories suffered a tremendous electoral reversal and weren't able to challenge Labour in marginal seats.

"Maybe there won't be a hard Brexit", Norwegian Foreign Minister Boerge Brende said. "Young people voted hard for Remain", he argued.

May Friday insisted that she would stick to the Brexit timetable. A diminished May, who is already facing calls to resign, has less parliamentary room for maneuver within her own party.

Davidson on Friday quickly made it clear that May needs to heed the voice of the soft Brexiters, urging her to adopt a "consensual" approach.

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