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UK Labour lawmakers pass no-confidence motion in Corbyn

Opposition Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn leaves after addressing a gathering of supporters demonstrating in Parliament Square, in central London, Britain

Lawmakers from Britain’s opposition Labour Party backed a motion of no confidence in their leader Jeremy Corbyn by an overwhelming margin on Tuesday, but Corbyn said he would not resign.

They voted 172 to 40 for the motion, sources said.

The motion was tabled in the wake of Britain’s vote to leave the European Union and backed by many who felt Corbyn had not campaigned hard enough to keep the country inside the EU, and would not be able to win a future election.

The result, which was widely expected after days of heavy criticism from within his party, has no formal consequence and does not automatically trigger a leadership election.

Corbyn subsequently said he would not resign, in a statement issued shortly after the vote.

“I was democratically elected leader of our party for a new kind of politics by 60 per cent of Labour members and supporters, and I will not betray them by resigning,” he said.

“Today’s vote by MPs (Members of Parliament) has no constitutional legitimacy.”

Corbyn has previously said he would stand again if the party did call a leadership contest. A leadership contest would have to take place if 51 or more Labour lawmakers pledge their support for an alternative candidate.

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