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May vows to fight on after cabinet departures

Prime minister Theresa May has promised to fight any attempt to remove her from office after two cabinet ministers quit in 24 hours.

Boris Johnson quit as foreign secretary yesterday and Brexit secretary David Davis left his post on Sunday evening.

Davis warned May’s proposal to keep Britain closely aligned to European Union rules was in danger of betraying the vote to leave.

In his resignation letter, Johnson says the possibility of a “more nimble and dynamic” Britain outside the EU is being undermined by “needless self-doubt”.

In her response to Johnson, May says she is a “little surprised” and regretful he stepped down after “productive discussions” at Chequers last Friday.

Jeremy Hunt, who was health secretary, has been appointed as foreign secretary. Hunt voted to remain in the EU in the Brexit referendum.

Matt Hancock, who has been the culture secretary since January, has stepped into Hunt’s former role.

The resignations of Johnson and Davis mark the first time since 1982 that two Cabinet ministers have stepped down within 24 hours outside of a reshuffle.

Dominic Raab, the former housing minister who campaigned to leave the EU, has become Brexit secretary.

The UK is set to leave the block in March 2019 and businesses have been pushing for clarity on future trade ties to reduce uncertainty as quickly as possible.

Yesterday BlackRock said it selected Paris over London as its new base for alternative investment services ahead of Brexit.

In recent months, Paris has stepped up efforts to woo financial firms away from London after the UK quits the EU.

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