Theresa May intends to form coalition government between the Conservatives and Ulster Unionists

Theresa May speaking following the General Election result.
Theresa May speaking following the General Election result.

Theresa May has announced that she intends to form a coalition government between her Conservative Party and the Ulster Unionists.

With the Tories earning 318 seats and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) clinching 10 across the Irish Sea, the pair would have two more MPs than the 326 minimum required.

Here is the text of Prime Minister Theresa May's statement in Downing Street following her meeting with the Queen:

"I have just been to see Her Majesty the Queen and I will now form a Government.

"A government that can provide certainty and lead Britain forward at this critical time for our country.

"This Government will guide the country through the crucial Brexit talks that begin in just 10 days and deliver on the will of the British people by taking the United Kingdom out of the

European Union.

"It will work to keep our nation safe and secure by delivering the change that I set out following the appalling attacks in Manchester and London.

"Cracking down on the ideology of Islamist extremism and all those who support it and giving the police and the authorities the powers they need to keep our country safe.

"The government I lead will put fairness and opportunity at the heart of everything we do so that we will fulfil the promise of Brexit together and over the next five years build a country in

which no one and no community is left behind, a country in which prosperity and opportunity are shared across this United Kingdom. "

Speaking on the steps of Downing Street, Mrs May added that despite having lost their majority in the Commons, only the Conservatives had the "legitimacy" to form a Government.

"What the country needs more than ever is certainty and having secured the largest number of votes and the greatest number of seats in the General Election it is clear that only the

Conservative and Unionist party has the legitimacy and ability to provide that certainty by commanding a majority in the House of Commons," she said.

"As we do, we continue to work with our allies in the Democratic Unionist party in particular.

"Our two parties have enjoyed a strong relationship over many years and this gives me the confidence to believe that we will be able to work together in the interests of the whole United Kingdom."