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May's Conservative party may lose parliamentary majority — exit poll

June 09, 2017, 0:51 UTC+3 LONDON

Prime Minister Theresa May’s conservative party will get 314 places in the 650-seat parliament, which is 16 mandates less than in the previous parliament

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©  AP Photo/Markus Schreiber

LONDON, June 9. /TASS/. The ruling Conservative Party leads the early parliamentary polls in the UK, but is on its way to ceding the parliamentary majority, according to an exit poll released on Thursday night.

The exit poll by the country’s three major broadcasters, projects Prime Minister Theresa May’s conservative party to get 314 places in the 650-seat parliament, which is 16 mandates less than in the previous parliament.

The Labour party will get 266 seats, while 14 will go to Liberal Democrats, 34 - to the Scottish National Party and 22 to other political forces.

With no overall majority, the Conservatives would not be able to overrule the combined weight of other parties.

However, BBC warned that the final result may differ drastically from the one projected by the exit polls.

"There are 76 seats that our predictions show as being too close to call," the broadcaster said, adding that it was hard to be certain on which of the candidates would win in those constituencies.

May announced snap elections in late April in a bid to strengthen her party’s parliamentary majority before the start of the Brexit talks with Brussels.

Emily Thornberry, the Labour MP for Islington South and Finsbury and the current Shadow Foreign Secretary, said the prime minister should "consider her position" the exit poll results prove to be correct.

"Just think only seven weeks ago the hubris of the Prime Minister who was 20 points ahead, who wanted to have a blank cheque, she wanted to do whatever she wanted with the country with Brexit, with the economy, with our National Health Service and we said no and we meant it," Thornberry said in a Sky News broadcast.

"We will see what happens next but if the Labour Party is called on to provide the next government, we will do so and do it in a unified way under a popular manifesto... with a leader who is strong," she added.

Paul Nuttall, who heads the Eurosceptic and right-wing populist UK Independence Party, said May’s move to declare snap elections "has put Brexit in jeopardy."

"If the exit poll is true then Theresa May has put Brexit in jeopardy. I said at the start this election was wrong. Hubris," he wrote on his Twitter page.

UK Defence Secretary Michael Fallon called on to wait for official results before speculating about the future of the government.

"This is a projection, it's not a result," he said. "Exit polls have been wrong in the past."

"In 2015 they underestimated our vote. A couple of elections before they overestimated our vote," he went on. "So I do think we need to see some actual results before we can interpret this one way or the other."

The exit poll data was announced shortly after the polling stations closed at at 10:00 p.m. local time. The main flurry of results are due starting from 2:00 a.m. local time. The final result will be announced this morning.

The Newcastle-upon-Tyne Central constituency was the first to announce the general elections results. Labour MP Chi Onwurah was declared winner with 24,071 votes at approximately an hour after polling stations closed. Houghton and Sunderland South came in a close second, naming Labour MP Bridget Phillipson as the winner with 24,665 seats.

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