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EU council president Donald Tusk says UK general election call 'a plot twist worth of Hitchcock'

'It was Hitchcock, who directed Brexit: first an earthquake and then the tension rises' 

Caroline Mortimer
Tuesday 18 April 2017 17:00 BST
Donald Tusk is in charge of overseeing the Brexit talks
Donald Tusk is in charge of overseeing the Brexit talks (Getty)

Donald Tusk has dubbed Theresa May’s decision to call for a snap election as a twist worth of Alfred Hitchcock.

The President of the European Council first tweeted that he had spoken to Ms May about the decision to hold a new vote on 8 June then compared the move to something created by Hollywood’s master of suspense:

He was referring to remark widely attributed to the British-born filmmaker that a good movie "should start with an earthquake and be followed by rising tension".

The former Polish prime minister chairs the summit of EU leaders and is overseeing Brexit negotiations.

In a short speech outside No 10, Ms May announced the vote just as Brussels was about to start formal negotiations on the exit deal for the UK before it leaves the EU in March 2019.

Ms May said there was "no going back" on last year's referendum result but she wanted to heal the divisions within Westminster.

She explained that their approach to Brexit negotiations was "the right approach" and was "in the national interest" but other political parties continued to oppose it.

She said: "The country is coming together, but Westminster is not.

"In recent weeks Labour has threatened to vote against the deal we reach with the European Union.

"The Liberal Democrats have said they want to grind the business of government to a standstill.

"The Scottish National Party say they will vote against the legislation that formally repeals Britain's membership of the European Union.

"And unelected members of the House of Lords have vowed to fight us every step of the way."

The PM said other parties believe the Government's majority in the House of Commons is too small for them to force through changes and they can make them "change course" but "they are wrong".

"They under-estimate our determination to get the job done and I am not prepared to let them endanger the security of millions of working people across the country", she said.

Ms May is likely to win as many as 69 seats in the election based on current polling which will give her a strong mandate to pursue the hard Brexit her Government appears to be leaning towards.

This would give her the power to force the final Brexit deal through Parliament. Her current majority of just 17 means if a small number of pro-EU rebels join forces with Labour and the Liberal Democrats she would suffer an embarrassing defeat.

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