Keir Starmer to become UK's next prime minister after historic Labour victory

Labour leader Keir Starmer has led his party to a historic victory in the UK's general election. He promised "a changed Labour party ready to serve our country. Ready to restore Britain to the service of working people" in his victory speech.

Early on Friday morning, Labour won its 326th seat in Parliament, securing an outright majority. It is a historic victory for the centre-left party: with a handful of seats still to be declared, they have won 411 out of 650 seats at the time of writing, the best result since Tony Blair's landslide victory of 419 seats in 1997.

'A sobering verdict'

Outgoing prime minister Rishi Sunak's Conservative party, meanwhile, suffered its worst electoral defeat since the party was founded in 1834, winning just 119 seats. In 2019, it won 365 seats. Sunak took responsibility for the defeat on Friday morning, saying that "the British people have delivered a sobering verdict".

Despite the victory, the election results contain some early warning signs for Labour. Britons voted in record numbers for fringe parties such as the Greens, Nigel Farage's Reform UK and pro-Gaza independents, indicating that the result was more anti-Conservative than pro-Labour.

Starmer acknowledged the challenge of restoring trust in Britain's political system. "We have to return politics to public service. Show that politics can be a force for good," he said.

European congratulations

Outgoing European Council president Charles Michel was one of the first European leaders to congratulate the future British prime minister. "The European Union and the United Kingdom are crucial partners, working together in all areas of mutual interest to their citizens," he wrote on X.

European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen also congratulated Starmer on social media, saying she looks forward to working with him "in a constructive partnership to address common challenges and strengthen European security".

Rishi Sunak will address the British people on Friday at 10 Downing Street, his official residence, after which he will meet King Charles III to officially resign. A few hours later, Starmer is expected to make his first speech as the UK's prime minister.



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UK Exit poll projects Labour party landslide victory with 410 seats
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