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‘UK general election will not change EU’s stance on Brexit’

Theresa May has been holding talks with key political figures in Britain and the wider EU after her surprise announcement of a general election in June.

FILE: British Prime Minister Theresa May. Picture: AFP.

LONDON - British Prime Minister Theresa May has been holding talks with key political figures in Britain and the wider European Union after her surprise announcement of a general election in June.

With May’s ruling Conservative Party enjoying record leads in recent opinion polls, many believe the impending vote will strengthen her hand in negotiating Britain’s departure from the EU.

But senior European figures have already insisted a UK general election will not change the EU’s stance on Brexit.

Recent opinion polls suggest May’s Conservative government could dramatically increase its slender 17-seat majority in the UK’s House of Commons following the election on 8 June.

Despite this, political opponents in Britain have widely welcomed the election, with the European Commission also hinting it was in favour of the vote.

European Council President Donald Tusk has said he had a “good” phone call with Mrs May following her election announcement. He insisted the EU’s stance on Britain quitting the trading bloc would not change - but he did liken the election news to a plot twist in an Alfred Hitchcock movie.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)