May's 'own goal' makes Brexit talks a messy prospect, say European Union leaders

The country could be plunged into uncertainty for weeks as Theresa May seeks to form a government, if her Conservative party has lost its overall majority as an exit poll and near-complete results indicate.

"On behalf of the European Council, I would like to congratulate you on your reappointment as Prime Minister", Tusk wrote in a letter published on the Council's website.

He tweeted: "We don't know when Brexit talks start". Adding that the "timetable and European Union positions are clear, he said: "Let's put our minds together on striking a deal". Instead of strong and stable leadership we witness chaos and uncertainty", he said.

On Brexit negotiations, Marshall said, "No business would walk into a negotiation without clear objectives, an agreed starting position, and a strong negotiating team.

With a weak negotiating partner, there's a danger that the negotiations will turn out badly for both sides", adding that he was unsure if Britain's negotiations about leaving the bloc could begin on time.

Samantha Hurley, director of operations at APSCo, said, "It seems that Theresa May's gamble on calling a snap election hasn't paid off and it is unfortunate that this result does not offer the level of stability that the United Kingdom desperately needs".

Europe's Budget Commissioner has warned that a weakened Government in London could undermine the Brexit process.

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Speaking in Brussels, he said: "As far as the Commission is concerned we can open negotiations tomorrow morning at half past nine".

"Our shared responsibility and urgent task now is to conduct the negotiations on the UK's withdrawal from the European Union in the best possible spirit, securing the least disruptive outcome for our citizens, businesses and countries after March 2019", he said.

On June 23, it will be a full year since Britain voted to leave the EU. Bohuslav Sobotka said that too much time had already been wasted. Some compared her to her predecessor David Cameron, who sought to silence Eurosceptic fellow Conservatives by calling the referendum on European Union membership which ended his career and shocked Europe.

Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament's Brexit co-ordinator, described the General Election result as "yet another own goal" for the UK.

Indeed, if there is no government, there is no negotiating partner to start these talks with anyway, so it is only realistic to expect that that date of June 19 is not carved in stone and could be delayed.

Attention will now focus on whether May can rule with the help of the staunchly pro-Brexit Democratic Unionist Party after they struck a deal on Friday.

"The DUP [will be] using every ounce of leverage that they have to get the Westminster government to do things they want to do, in terms of the border", Bond said, pointing out that it is unclear from the DUP's manifesto exactly what type of border it wants with the Republic. "But not quite the Brexit election we expected", said Rob Ford, political science professor at Manchester University. "Negotiations should be led by a government and a prime minister that will be in place for the duration".

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