Departing minister inists PM should not be caretaker and should apologise to Queen
Who could replace Boris Johnson in the role of prime minister?
Calling it “eccentric” to change leader at this stage, Mr Johnson insisted he would stay on in the job while a new Tory leader is elected – despite urgent calls for him to hand over power today.
He also refrained from talking about the more than 50 resignations from government or the collapse in support for him in the Conservative Party which saw five Cabinet ministers quit in two days.
Acknowledging that “in politics, no one is remotely indispensable’’, he blamed a “herd instinct” for his arguments to stay in power being rejected. It was painful not to be able to deliver on his plans, he added.
Addressing the people of Ukraine, Mr Johnson said “we in the UK will continue to back your fight for freedom for as long as it takes”.
The speech fires the starting gun on the race between would-be successors for the party leadership, for which a timetable will be announced next week.
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Zelensky aide thanks Boris Johnson for support of Ukraine
Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, has thanked Boris Johnson for his support of Ukraine.
In a video posted on Twitter, he spoke to the camera and added: “Today we have everything we need for the effective defence of the country: weapons, partnership and coalition, and thanks to Mr Johnson, we understand that victory is a real symbol of the future in Ukraine … we are extremely grateful to our partners, Mr Johnson, for the opportunity to do our work effectively.”
Our policy correspondent Jon Stone has more on the comments from Liz Truss, who broke days of silence on the prime minister’s resignation as he concluded his speech outside No 10.
Ms Truss was on a trip abroad visiting Indonesia while Mr Johnson’s Cabinet collapsed around him and had so far not spoken publicly about the turmoil in Westminster.
Foreign Secretary is seen as a hopeful to replace the outgoing prime minister
Green Party co-leader calls for general election
Green Party co-leader Carla Denyer has called for a general election in response to Boris Johnson’s resignation.
“That it has taken so long and so many scandals for us to reach this stage is a travesty. I hope that Boris Johnson’s resignation will bring to an end this shameful and unedifying period of British politics,” Ms Denyer said.
“It is clear though that this resignation has come far too late to avoid doing lasting damage to our democracy and country at large, and the Conservative MPs who have backed him until now are the ones to blame for that.
“For too long, the Tories have allowed the situation to drag on while protecting a Prime Minister who has lied and lied again in order to cling on to power despite the fact it was rendering the government useless during multiple crises.
“The British public cannot forget the damage the Conservative Party as a whole has wilfully inflicted on this country in the middle of a pandemic, a cost of living crisis and the accelerating climate crisis.
“Boris Johnson was not just one bad apple, the whole tree is rotten. The public have lost confidence in this government and that is why it is so important that we now have a general election to give people a say on how they want their country run.”
You can watch Boris Johnson’s resignation speech in full here:
Boris Johnson speaks of ‘immense privilege’ to serve as PM
Boris Johnson said it had been an “immense privilege” to serve as prime minister and thanked the British public as he concluded his speech.
“Above all, I want to thank you, the British public, for the immense privilege that you have given me and I want you to know that from now on until the new prime minister is in place, your interests will be served and the government of the country will carry on.
“Being prime minister is an education in itself. I have travelled to every part of the United Kingdom and in addition to the beauty of our natural world I have found so many people possessed of such boundless British originality and so willing to tackle old problems in news ways that I know that even if things seem dark now, our future together is golden.
“Thank you all very much. Thank you.”
PM thanks wife, family and civil service
Boris Johnson thanked his wife, family and the civil service in his speech.
The prime minister said: “I want to thank Carrie and our children, and all the members of our family who have had to put up with so much for so long.”
He also thanked the “peerless British civil service” and the “fantastic NHS” who “helped to extend my own period in office”.
Johnson pledges to support new leader
Boris Johnson has said he will give “as much support” to the new Tory leader as he can.
“And to you, the British public – I know there will be many people who are relieved, and perhaps quite a few who will also be disappointed,” he said.
“And I want you to know how sad I am to be giving up the best job in the world.”
Liz Truss breaks silence, calls for ‘calmness and unity’
Foreign secretary Liz Truss has broken her silence, saying the Conservative Party needed “calmness and unity’’ until a new leader is elected.
Johnson expresses ‘pain’ over resignation
Boris Johnson has expressed pain and regret in not being able to finish his term as prime minister.
“I regret not to have been successful in those arguments and of course it is painful not to be able to see through so many ideas and projects myself”.
The “herd instinct is powerful and when the herd moves, it moves,” he said, adding: “My friends in politics, no one is distinctly indispensible”.
“Our brilliant and Darwinian system will produce another leader equally committed to taking this country forward through tough times,” he said.