(1.20pm) British election results: seats so far by party

Her defeat was followed by the loss of Cabinet Office minister Ben Gummer in Ipswich.

May had called the snap election in hopes of garnering a strong mandate for the Brexit negotiations. Sky News predicted May would score somewhere between 315 and 325 seats.

With Brexit talks due to start in 10 days, it remains to be seen whether May is the person who Angela Merkel will face across the negotiating table.

As the country awaited results early, May said Britain needed a "period of stability".

The U.K. election has resulted in a hung parliament, with no party gaining the minimum number of seats - 326 out of a total 650 - required to form a majority government.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd, one of May's closest allies, barely held onto her seat of Hastings and Rye, after a recount put her just over 300 votes ahead of the Labour candidate.

Instead, she risked an ignominious exit after just 11 months at Number 10 Downing Street, which would be the shortest tenure of any prime minister for nearly a century.

After a volatile six-week campaign, British voters have shattered Theresa May's hopes of winning a bigger Brexit mandate and have returned a hung parliament.

Corbyn's party fared significantly better in the general election than had been expected. One mess risks following another.

Her opponents also took issue with her refusal to take part in a televised debate with other party leaders. Sterling fell by more than two cents against the USA dollar after an exit poll showed May losing her majority, though it later recovered some of its losses.

The pound plummeted more than 1.5% against the United States dollar and 1% against the euro as the shock figures set the scene for political turmoil at Westminster, disruption to upcoming Brexit negotiations and the possibility of a second election later in the year. With the smaller parties more closely aligned with Labour than with the Conservatives, the prospect of Corbyn becoming prime minister no longer seems fanciful. During his three decades on Labour's leftist fringe, Corbyn consistently opposed European integration and denounced the EU as a corporate, capitalist body.

If correct, the Labour party could wield enormous power as the Conservatives will have to negotiate with them - and possibly renege on key party policies. The populist anti-EU party shrank to nearly nothing after failing to win a single seat.

If the current projections are right and the Conservatives end up with 318 seats, the party could conceivably form a government with the support of the Northern Irish unionist party the DUP, which looks set to have 10 seats.

Chief among Labour's potential allies would be the Scottish National Party (SNP), which suffered major setbacks but still won a majority of Scottish seats.

"Theresa May arrogantly gambled with our Brexit and blew it", said a spokesman for the Leave.EU pro-Brexit campaign.

As Prime Minister May's future remains uncertain, one man who is nearly certain to put his hand up in the event of a leadership contest is Foreign Minister Boris Johnson. If she is the leader of the largest party, there is a duty on her to seek to form government. Faced with forecasts of electoral oblivion, the result for Labour was a triumph. No party won a majority in elections in 1909, 1929, 1974 and 2010.

Larry the cat sits outside 10 Downing Street on June 9, awaiting the result of the United Kingdom elections. "They are fundamentally anti-establishment in their attitudes and the vicar's daughter (May) is very pro-establishment".

"I think it would be very, very hard indeed for her to stay on", political analyst Carole Walker told CNN.

Speaking on Sky News, former Conservative Party leader Iain Duncan Smith said any move to replace May would be "catastrophic". The campaign had played out differently in Scotland than elsewhere, with the SNP's drive for a second independence referendum the main faultline. All the parties that made gains oppose independence.

  • Zachary Reyes