UK election 2017: Theresa May fails to claim majority, Brexit talks blur
London : UK Prime Minister Theresa May's ruling Conservative Party has failed to win an overall majority in parliament, and the country is now set for a hung parliament, media reports said on Friday.
With 629 results in out of the total 650, the latest party figures are: Conservatives: 42 per cent (up 5); Labour Party 40 per cent (up 10); Liberal Democrats 7 per cent (down 1); Scottish National Party (SNP) 3 per cent (down 2); UK Independent Party 2 per cent (down 11); and Greens Party 2 per cent (down 2), reports the Guardian.
The Conservatives are projected to get 316 seats, Labour 265, the SNP 34 and the Liberal Democrats 13.
According to the BBC, the hung parliament would be a humiliation for Prime Minister May, who chose to call Thursday's snap general election to try to strengthen her hand in talks with the European Union over Britain's exit from the 27-nation bloc.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn urged May to resign soon after exit polls on Thursday night indicated a gain for the opposition party, but she said her party would "ensure" stability in the UK.
"At this time more than anything else, this country needs a period of stability," May said.
"And if, as the indications have shown and if this is correct that the Conservative Party has won the most seats and probably the most votes, then it will be incumbent on us to ensure we have that period of stability - and that is exactly what we will do," the BBC quoted the Prime Minister as saying.
Meanwhile, analysts at global bank Citi said they expect May to resign on Friday as Prime Minister once the final results are announced by lunch time.
They said the hung Parliament makes both a "soft" Brexit (staying in the single market) and a chaotic Brexit (no deal) more likely than before.
SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon said the election "has been a disaster for Theresa May", reports the BBC.
Leader of UK Independence Party Paul Nuttall tweeted: "If the exit poll is true then Theresa May has put Brexit in jeopardy. I said at the start this election was wrong. Hubris."
The biggest shock so far has been the Liberal Democrat MP Nick Clegg losing his seat to a Labour candidate. He was deputy prime minister of the UK from 2010 to 2015 in a coalition government with the Conservatives.
Former SNP leader Alex Salmond was also defeated, losing his seat to a Conservative contender.
A total of 650 Westminster MPs will be elected, with about 45.8 million people entitled to vote.
A party needs 326 seats to have an overall majority.