European Union stays calm as two top United Kingdom ministers quit

Most senior Brexit official quits UK government | 1 NEWS NOW

"There are a lot of questions in here, there is a lot of unhappiness, there is a great deal of concern that we are saying that we leave - it's not "to be or not to be" it's "to leave or not to leave", he said. "But so many times since this Brexit process began, we've had to ask ourselves: will she stay or will she go?"

In response, May said she was a "little surprised" to receive his resignation after last Friday's cabinet agreement.

Johnson served as foreign secretary for nearly exactly two years, taking up the post on July 13, 2016.

Mr Johnson does not pull any punches, saying Brexit "should be about opportunity and hope" and a "chance to do things differently", but "that dream is dying, suffocated by needless self-doubt".

With Britain due to leave the 28-nation bloc on March 29, 2019, European Union officials have warned Britain repeatedly that time is running out to seal a deal spelling out the terms of the divorce and a post-split relationship.

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By late afternoon, the pound was down against the dollar GBP=D3 and the euro GBPEUR= after the resignation of Johnson, figurehead of the referendum campaign to quit the EU.

"It seems to me we're giving too much away, too easily, and that's a risky strategy at this time", Davis said in a BBC radio interview Monday morning.

Mrs May appointed junior minister Dominic Raab, a former diplomat who was a prominent campaigner for Leave in the 2016 referendum, as Mr Davis's successor.

The resignations of two of her most senior Cabinet ministers comes amid growing talk of a leadership challenge.

"It doesn't matter to us, who sits on the other side of the table", one European Union source said, who is involved in the talks, adding that Davis's departure should not lead to a jolt in the process.

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But the bottom line in Brussels is: hard or soft, Brexit must be done in time.

On Monday, minutes after Johnson quit, May defended her Brexit plan to lawmakers in the House of Commons - with Johnson absent from his usual place on the Conservative front bench.

May's spokesman said she would fight any attempt to unseat her.

Mrs May told MPs that the plan agreed by the cabinet at Chequers was the basis of a "responsible and credible" offer to restart renegotiations with the EU.

"What we are proposing is challenging to the European Union", she said.

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She told her critics the alternative to the party coming together could be a left wing Labour administration, with Jeremy Corbyn as prime minister.

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