London, Apr 18: UK Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday called for an early general election on June 8, saying it is the only way to guarantee political stability for years ahead after Britain leaves the European Union.
Explaining the decision, May indicated that the move will help unite the political corridors of the country. There will be a House of Commons vote on the proposed election on Wednesday and May will need Parliament's backing to hold a vote before 2020.
Explaining her change of heart on an early election, May said: "I have concluded the only way to guarantee certainty and security for years ahead is to hold this election".
Speaking outside her Downing Street residence in London, May warned that 'division in Westminster will risk our ability to make a success of Brexit'.
The Prime Minister had earlier repeatedly denied that she would call an election before the next scheduled poll in 2020. But following a Cabinet meeting at Downing Street she said she would go to the country this year. The dramatic move comes against the backdrop of the country's decision to leave the European Union in the last year's referendum.
Britain's next election was due to have been held in 2020, according to a legislation but the law can be overruled if two-thirds of lawmakers in the British parliament vote in favour of early elections.
Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Opposition, welcomed May's decision to hold the snap election.
"Labour will stand up for the people of Britain. I welcome the Prime Minister's decision to give the British people the chance to vote for a government that will put the interests of the majority first," he said.
"Labour will be offering the country an effective alternative to a government that has failed to rebuild the economy, delivered falling living standards and damaging cuts to our schools and NHS," he said.