Jeremy Hunt appointed foreign secretary in UK government reshuffle

Theresa May launched a reshuffle after a string of resignations over Brexit strategy plans 

Jeremy Hunt has been appointed as the new Foreign Secretary
Jeremy Hunt has been appointed as the new Foreign Secretary

Jeremy Hunt has been named as foreign secretary to replace Boris Johnson after he resigned yesterday.

Theresa May launched a reshuffle of her top team after a string of resignations over her Brexit strategy plan. Boris Johnson, Brexit Secretary David Davis, and several junior figures resigned.

Matt Hancock, the culture secretary, was appointed as Hunt’s successor at health, while Jeremy Wright, the attorney general, is to become culture secretary.

The Tory MP Geoffrey Cox was later named as the new attorney general.

Back in 2016, Hunt backed remain 16 and after the vote to leave the EU, considered running for the party leadership vacated by David Cameron on the basis of a Norway-style deal and a second referendum on the exit terms.

Hunt was the longest-serving health secretary since the creation of the NHS in 1948 and had refused to leave his job in January when May had asked him to do so during a reshuffle.

In his first comments as foreign secretary, Hunt said he would be standing "four square" behind the prime minister "so that we can get through an agreement with the European Union based on what was agreed by the Cabinet last week at Chequers.

The UK is due to leave the European Union on 29 March 2019, but the two sides have yet to agree how trade will work between the UK and the EU afterwards.

The delay has been partly blamed on deep disagreements within the Conservative Party over what shape Brexit should take.

In his resignation letter, Johnson said that May's proposals for post-Brexit trade would leave Britain a "colony" of the EU.

The Brexit "dream is dying, suffocated by needless self-doubt", he said.

Instead, "we appear to be heading for a semi-Brexit, with large parts of the economy still locked in the EU system, but with no UK control over that system."

May said she was "sorry - and a little surprised" by Johnson's move after his apparent support on Friday.

 

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