New role for Daventry MP after resignations from Brexit department

Andrea Leadsom

Andrea Leadsom

Britain's new Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Jeremy Hunt talks to the media outside the Foreign Office in central London, Britain, July 9, 2018.

Besides their senior colleagues, Brexit junior minister Steve Baker and two ministerial aides also resigned from the government on Sunday.

"I have always liked him", he said, adding he had not spoken with Prime Minister May since Johnson quit.

While Johnson was one of the most high-profile Brexit campaigners, Hunt backed "Remain" during the 2016 referendum campaign.

"If we end up with a Brexit deal as it seems we are going to I will certainly finish my association with the Tory party and I do not think I would be the only one".

May responded that she was "sorry and a little surprised" by his decision but said she accepted it was necessary "if you are not able to provide the support we need to secure this deal in the interests of the United Kingdom".

In January 2014, Mr Johnson said: "If these amendments, supported by dozens of cities across Europe, can succeed, we can save literally hundreds of lives across the European Union in years to come. I am deeply concerned at the position of the British government and urge them to embrace this vital issue".

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Jeremy Wright, the Attorney General, will replace Hancock, and backbencher Geoffrey Cox will take over his role.

Despite a "collective agreement" on the plan at Chequers last Friday the pair said they could not back the proposals, specifically the plan for a common rulebook for industrial goods and agricultural products.

"I'd be interested to see the actual white paper because there may be some nuances in it which may make people feel a bit happier", she told Sky News.

Mr Hunt takes over from Boris Johnson, who made his shock resignation announcement this afternoon. "We do not agree about the best way of delivering our shared commitment to honoring the result of the referendum". He said: "From what she has said Brexit does not mean Brexit and what we will end up with is the very worst of both worlds - still in the European Union but with no vote". A leadership challenge to her can be sparked if 48 of her lawmakers write to the Conservative's influential 1922 Committee.

He has always supported a so-called "hard Brexit", which supports relinquishing access to the bloc's single market in exchange for full border control.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said Mrs May should make way for a Labour administration if her Government can not get its act together quickly.

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