British PM Theresa May's top aides resign after election fiasco


LONDON-The two top aides to British Prime Minister Theresa May resigned Saturday, shouldering some of the blame for an election that proved a disaster for the Conservative Party, a headache for Britain's exit from the European Union - and potentially a fatal blow to May's premiership.

But media reports suggest they had demanded the departure of May's joint chiefs of staff, Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill, as the price for allowing the 60-year-old vicar's daughter to stay in office.

Mr Timothy said in statement: The reason for the disappointing result was not the absence of support for Theresa May and the Conservatives but an unexpected surge in support for Labour. Meanwhile, the Labour Party started the campaign looking as if it was maybe facing some sort of existential disaster.

May's gamble of calling snap polls backfired after the British electorate delivered a hung Parliament, forcing her to seek the support of a small Northern Irish party for staying in power, as the country braces for hard Brexit talks.

May wanted to win explicit backing for her stance on Brexit, which involves leaving the EU's single market and imposing restrictions on immigration while trying to negotiate free trade deal with the bloc.

It added that "the logic leading to Mrs".

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Katie Perrior, who quit as May's communications chief in April, said Timothy and Hill were "great street fighters but poor political leaders" and exercised too much power over the prime minister. Some say her failure means the government must now take a more flexible approach to the divorce.

It was another humiliation for May, and a sign that the socially conservative DUP, with its strong focus on Northern Ireland's specific political complexities, will not necessarily be a compliant partner for her minority government.

While the to-and-fro between Downing Street and the DUP was unfolding, several British newspapers were reporting that some prominent Conservatives, including Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Brexit minister David Davis, were being urged by supporters to challenge May for the party leadership.

The DUP was founded in the 1970s by the late firebrand preacher Ian Paisley, and in the 1980s was a key player in the "Save Ulster from Sodomy" campaign, which unsuccessfully fought against the legalization of gay sex.

"They are committed to stability and peace in Northern Ireland, they have been part of that for many years and they want that to continue".

"I could not care less what people get up to in terms of their sexuality". May and her party had been expected to win by large margins, but things did not go as she had planned. "When it becomes a matter for me is when people try to redefine marriage".

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More than 50,000 police were on patrol during the vote, with France still jittery after a wave of jihadist attacks across Europe. The projections for French media outlets showed Macron's La République en Marche (LRM) winning more than 32 percent of the vote.

With talks between the Tories and the DUP expected to begin within days, Sinn Féin's Alex Maskey expressed concern about the impact of any deal on the political process in Northern Ireland, with the powersharing administration now suspended.

"May stares into the abyss", said The Times' Saturday edition while the Daily Mail led with "Tories Turn On Theresa".

That throws into doubt the complex talks on Britain's departure from the European Union that are due to begin in just 10 days.

DUP Leader Arlene Foster recently denied the party was homophobic.

Britain's bestselling Sun newspaper said senior members of the party had vowed to get rid of May, but would wait at least six months because they were anxious that a leadership contest could propel Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn into power.

Former Chancellor George Osborne has said the DUP will now be able to go through each Conservative bill "line by line" in order to take - or reject - what it wants from the deal.

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