Elizabeth Piper, William James, Andrew MacAskill
LONDON, REUTERS – 9 July 2018
Prime Minister Theresa May’s foreign minister and Brexit negotiator quit on Monday in protest at her plans to keep close trade ties with the European Union after Britain leaves the bloc, stirring rebellion in her party’s ranks.
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, the face of Brexit for many, resigned just hours after Brexit minister David Davis, emboldening some in her Conservative Party to mull a plot to unseat her less than nine months before Britain exits in March next year.
The two departures seemed to shatter May’s own proclamation of cabinet unity last Friday, when she said she believed she had, after two years of wrangling, secured agreement on Britain’s biggest foreign and trading policy shift in almost half a century.
But as Monday drew to a close, May was cheered and applauded by many Conservative lawmakers at a private meeting, having earlier spent more than two hours in parliament answering sometimes hostile questions.