British Prime Minister Theresa May spectacularly lost her electoral gamble, according to an exit poll and partial results that suggested her Conservatives would fall short of a majority in parliament, throwing her Brexit plans into disarray.
May called for general elections in April in order to secure a mandate for her vision of a Tory Brexit deal after the nation voted to leave the European Union in 2016. If the exit poll is true, it would be a disaster for May.
Here are the latest updates, analyses and opinions:
9:34 A.M.: British PM May has no intention of resigning after shock vote, BBC reports
9:30 A.M.: Shock U.K. vote raises EU concern over Brexit uncertainty
European Union leaders fear Prime Minister Theresa May's shock loss of her majority in the snap British election will delay Brexit talks due to start this month and raise the risk of negotiations failing. Read more here.
7:50 A.M. May faces calls to quit as she loses parliamentary majority
British Prime Minister Theresa May faced calls to quit on Friday after her election gamble to win a stronger mandate backfired as she lost her parliamentary majority, throwing British politics into turmoil and potentially disrupting Brexit negotiations. May is unable to get the 326 seats her Conservative party needs for an outright majority.
3:43 A.M. BBC changes forecast: May's Tories now projected to win 318 seats, down from previous forecast of 322
3:42 A.M. May says to provide stability if she wins most seats
Prime Minister Theresa May said Britain needed a period of stability and that she would take responsibility for delivering it if she won the most seats.
"At this time, more than anything else this country needs a period of stability," May said after winning her own parliamentary seat.
"If, as the indications have shown, and if this is correct that the Conservative Party has won the most seats and probably the most votes then it will be incumbent on us to ensure that we have that period of stability and that is exactly what we will do," May said.
3:35 A.M. Corbyn calls for PM May to stand down
British Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said it was time for Prime Minister Theresa May to stand down after election results indicated she had lost votes, support and the confidence of voters.
"This election was called in order for the prime minister to gain a large majority in order for her to assert her authority," he said in London.
"If there is a message from tonight's results, it's this: the Prime Minister called this election because she wanted a mandate," Corbyn said. "Well the mandate she's got is lost Conservative seats, lost votes, lost support and lost confidence."
"I would have thought that's enough to go, and make way for a government that will be truly representative of all of the people of this country."
2:33 A.M. BBC: Conservatives forecast to win 322 seats, Labour 261
Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservatives were forecast to win 322 seats at a national election, the BBC said on Friday, more than the 314 predicted by an initial exit poll and closer to the 326 threshold needed to form a majority.
The updated forecasts gave the Labour 261 seats.
LONDON - Of all the hot-takes most likely to cool very quickly, one based on an election exit poll pretty much tops the list. However, the exit poll tonight in the British general election is so surprising as to be worth a quick analysis. All the necessary caveats apply. It’s not the real result, only a handful of the 650 seats being contested have been so far declared, and a few of those show slightly better results for the Conservative Party than the exit poll predicted. However, the exit poll carried out for BBC and Sky News is traditionally pretty reliable, falling in the last four elections within the 20-seat margin. That means that even if the exit poll was slightly wrong, and the Conservatives, unlike its prediction, retain a small majority in the parliament, this will still have been a colossal blow for Prime Minister Theresa May.
1:04 A.M. Nomura makes initial estimate that May will win Parliament majority, but not certain
Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservatives could win 338 seats, enough for an outright majority in Britain's parliament, London-based analysts at Nomura estimated on Friday, based on results from the exit poll and the first 15 seats to declare.
An exit poll commissioned by major broadcasters pointed to May's Conservatives falling short of an outright majority in the snap election she called in April.
Late on Thursday in an earlier estimate, Nomura said its model pointed to the Conservatives winning 331 seats.
Nomura cautioned against viewing its model as giving a clear steer that May would win an outright majority, noting that an alternative version of its model put the Conservatives on just 317 seats, short of the 326 needed for a majority.
"It's still not plain sailing for Theresa May and it's not yet out of minority government territory," Nomura currency strategist Jordan Rochester wrote in a note to clients.
11:09 P.M. UK Liberal Democrat: No pacts, deals or coalition - party source tells Sky News
Britain's Liberal Democrat party will enter "no pacts, no deals, no coalition" with other parties to help them to form a government after Thursday's election, Sky News reported, citing a senior source.
The poll showed the Liberal Democrats on track to win 14 seats, potentially giving them a significant role when negotiations start on who will form the next government.
10:53 P.M. U.K. election: Dismay and glee as first responses flow in after exit poll released
The former communications director for Prime Minister David Cameron says the exit poll result will rock the Conservative Party.
Craig Oliver told Sky News that if the poll is accurate "there will be deep and lasting shock" in party headquarters as Prime Minister Theresa May's decision to call an early election seems to have backfired.
"It was the biggest gamble a politician has taken for a long time and if that exit poll is right, it's failed," he said.
10:00 P.M. U.K. elections: Shock exit polls show PM May to lose Parliament majority
An exit poll projected that Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservative Party will win the biggest share of seats in Britain's election but could fall short of a majority in Parliament.
The survey predicts the Conservatives will get 314 seats and the Labour Party 266.
It projects 34 for the Scottish National Party and 14 for the Liberal Democrats.
Based on interviews with voters leaving polling stations across the country, the poll is conducted for a consortium of U.K. broadcasters and regarded as a reliable, though not exact, indicator of the likely result.
If confirmed the result will be a disaster for May, who called a snap election in the hope of increasing her majority.
Polling stations across Britain closed at 10 P.M. and ballots are being counted, with results due early Friday.
Results will come in over the next few hours for all 650 seats in the House of Commons.
The Conservatives held 330 seats in the last Parliament, compared with 229 for Labour, 54 for the Scottish National Party and nine for the Liberal Democrats.
May called an election three years ahead of schedule, at a time when her party was well ahead in the polls. But attacks that killed 30 people in Manchester and London twice brought the campaign to a halt, sent a wave of anxiety through Britain and forced May to defend the government's record on fighting terrorism.
9:12 P.M. Corbyn represents fork in the road for Jews in Labour-stronghold Manchester
Outside the disposal goods business he manages, Avi Leitner says bluntly, “I’m not going to vote for Corbyn, he’s a twat who believes in talking to terrorists. Of course I’m going to vote for the Conservatives, like most people here.” (Anshel Pfeffer) Read the full story
7:30 P.M. The battle for Britain: In places where U.K. election will be decided, it’s a toss-up
Not long ago, many Brits couldn’t imagine choosing a radical socialist like Corbyn as prime minister, but in the wake of terror attacks and a weak campaign by Theresa May, now they are not so sure. (Anshel Pfeffer) Read the full story
3:25 P.M. Watch: 'Naughty' Theresa May Memes Sweep the Internet
The British Prime Minister was asked, 'What's the naughtiest thing you ever did?' Her answer has been widely mocked on social media
12:58 P.M. Last minute polls give May a 4- to 13-point lead, according to British news outlets
If May pulls a 10-point win, the Tories will have a 74-seat majority – the largest the Conservatives have secured since the days of Margaret Thatcher, according to The Independent. (Haaretz)
12:20 P.M. Opinion: P.M. Terror isn’t the U.K.’s greatest threat, nor will it determine Thursday’s election
We can prepare for an election post-mortem that will be even more bitter than the campaign. Terror has left Britain bloodied yet unbowed, but the next government, shuffling towards Brexit, will have to reunite a country left suspicious, confused and divided over its future direction. (Daniella Peled) Read the full story
12:05 P.M. Why many British Jews are still voting for Corbyn's Labour
“You get it again and again when talking to Jewish voters,” says one Labour activist. “They say we could never vote for Labour as long as Jeremy Corbyn is the leader, and when I tell them I’m a Jew as well, they ask if I’m not ashamed to be canvassing for him.” (Anshell Pfeffer) Read the full story
12:00 P.M. Analysis: Why are pollsters all over the place?
No one is predicting a Labour parliamentary majority – but there's one scenario in which Jeremy Corbyn could beat Theresa May and become prime minister. (Anshel Pfeffer) Read the full story
9:10 A.M. Analysis: United Kingdom's accidental election between accidental leaders
No one could have predicted a matchup as bizarre as the one staged by Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn ahead of Thursday’s United Kingdom election. It's no surprise this campaign has gone wildly off script. (Anshel Pfeffer) Read the full story
7:00 A.M. Polls across the U.K. open
Polling stations opened across Britain on Thursday for national elections, amid heightened security worries following a series of terror attacks in what one senior police official described as "unprecedented times."
The public is being asked to be alert and to report concerns to police as voters choose 650 lawmakers for the House of Commons. Deputy Assistant Commissioner Lucy D'Orsi acknowledged concerns about Thursday's general election. (AP)
Want to enjoy 'Zen' reading - with no ads and just the article? Subscribe todaySubscribe now