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UK Politics

Boris Johnson reveals he will stand as MP in 2015 general election

Mr Johnson said he also intended to serve his full term as Mayor of London until 2016

Boris Johnson has confirmed that he will "in all probability" seek to become an MP in the 2015 general election.

The Mayor of London said following a speech in the capital that he "might as well be absolutely clear" on the fact that he intended to try and "find somewhere to stand" next year.

"I have not got any particular seat lined-up but I do think... in all probability I will try to find somewhere to stand in 2015," he said during a question-and-answer session.

Mr Johnson also said he intended to serve out his full term as Mayor, which runs until 2016 - meaning if he is elected as an MP he will be performing both functions concurrently.

Speaking about his chances if he stands, he added: "It's highly likely I will be unsuccessful in that venture - you should never underestimate the possibility of these things going badly wrong."

Mr Johnson's declaration that he intends to find a seat finally puts an end to months of speculation about his ambitions to make a return to Parliament.

He has repeatedly denied any such ambitions - in December telling a Westminster lunch that he "couldn't see how [he] could" given his workload as Mayor.

Today he admitted that he had "dance around [the question] an awfully long time now" and said it had become "pretty clear that I can't endlessly go on dodging these questions as I've tried to do".

Coming just a day after Baroness Warsi's resignation presented a significant challenge to the unity of David Cameron's Government, the news immediately raised the prospect that Mr Johnson could emerge as a challenger to David Cameron if the Conservatives are defeated or again fail to secure an overall Commons majority.

His announcement came at the end of a speech in which he raised the prospect that Britain could leave the EU if the Prime Minister fails to achieve his promised reforms.

Mr Cameron was quick to respond to Mr Johnson's declaration - despite still being out of the country on holiday, and in contrast to the speed of his reaction to the news about Lady Warsi yesterday.

He tweeted that it was "great news", adding: "I've always said I want my star players on the pitch."