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World
16 Sep 2018

Theresa May admits getting 'irritated' by debate over her leadership

British Prime Minister Theresa May concedes that she gets "irritated" by the debate over her leadership during the difficult Brexit negotiations.

She told the BBC in an interview scheduled to be broadcast today that she is concerned for the country's future, not her own, as talks about Britain's upcoming exit from the European Union continue.

Here are more details.

In context

May says discussion of her leadership is 'irritating'

May faces a split in her Conservative Party

May faces a split in her Conservative Party, with some influential figures preferring a more complete break with the EU that she is advocating. Roughly 50 hard-liners met Tuesday night to discuss her possible ouster.

May says the leadership talk can be distracting

Distracting talks

May says the leadership talk can be distracting

In the interview, PM May said the leadership talk can be distracting.

"I get a little bit irritated, but this debate is not about my future. This debate is about the future of the people of the UK and the future of the United Kingdom," May said.

"That's what I'm focused on, and that's what we should all be focused on," she added.

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Criticism

May criticized former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson

May criticized former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who resigned in July to protest her plan to keep some close ties to EU after Brexit.

Johnson, who is seen by many analysts as positioning himself as a possible successor to the embattled PM, recently caused a furor by comparing May's Brexit strategy to a "suicide vest".

May said, "(His) Choice of language is completely inappropriate."

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