Gordon Brown dismisses coup 'silliness'

Gordon Brown dismissed the botched coup bid as "silliness" today as he told of his determination to remain prime minister.

In an interview with The News Of The World, he also promised to serve a full term as leader if Labour was re-elected.

His former Cabinet colleagues Geoff Hoon and Patricia Hewitt urged Labour MPs to hold a secret ballot on the leadership, saying they were "deeply divided" over the issue.

Mr Brown said of their move: "I can't answer for the feelings of one or two people. But politics is full of...you know, large numbers of people are involved and they have to make their own decisions. They have got to be free to make the choices they want.

"I'm sorry it happened. I think it was a form of silliness."

He added: "I am the Prime Minister and am determined to remain so. I am determined, I am resolute."

The premier also revealed he had been turning to predecessor Tony Blair for advice.

"Tony and I talk a lot," he said.

"We have kept in touch and I have been drawing on his advice, as I always do."

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