BORIS Johnson has been elected as leader of the Conservative Party and will become the UK's next prime minister after defeating Jeremy Hunt.

Mr Johnson said it was an "extraordinary honour and privilege" to be elected Tory leader.

He praised Theresa May for her "extraordinary service to this party and this country", saying it was a privilege to serve in her Cabinet.

Mr Johnson told the audience at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in London: "Today at this political moment in our history we again have to reconcile two sets of instincts, two noble sets of instincts, between the deep desire of friendship and free trade and mutual support in security and defence between Britain and our European partners and the simultaneous desire, equally deep and heartfelt, for democratic self-government in this country.

"Of course some people would say that they are irreconcilable and it just can't be done."

He said he read in the Financial Times this morning that no incoming leader has ever faced "such a daunting set of circumstances".

"Well I look at you this morning and I ask myself, 'Do you look daunted? Do you feel daunted?' I don't think you look remotely daunted to me.

"I think we know that we can do it and that the people of this country are trusting in us to do it and we know that we will do it."

Mr Johnson's father, Stanley, said he was "thrilled" to see his son elected as Tory party leader.

"I feel absolutely thrilled, completely thrilled - it was a wonderful, inspiring speech, absolutely to be expected."

Outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May said: "Many congratulations to Boris Johnson on being elected leader of the Conservatives. We now need to work together to deliver a Brexit that works for the whole UK and to keep Jeremy Corbyn out of government. You will have my full support from the back benches."

Boris Johnson won with 92,153 votes compared to Jeremy Hunt's 46,656.

His share of the vote - 66.4% - is slightly lower than the share won by David Cameron in the 2005 Conservative leadership election (67.6%).


DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds
"Congratulations Boris Johnson. Looking forward to continuing our discussions on achieving our shared objectives to advance the Union, deliver Brexit and restore devolved government in NI."

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan

"Congratulations Boris Johnson. Let's put aside our differences and work together to reverse police and Transport for London cuts, invest in affordable homes & secure further devolution to London - which you backed as Mayor. But I'll never stop speaking out against the catastrophic threat of Brexit."

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn
"Boris Johnson has won the support of fewer than 100,000 unrepresentative Conservative Party members by promising tax cuts for the richest, presenting himself as the bankers' friend, and pushing for a damaging No Deal Brexit. But he hasn't won the support of our country.

"Johnson's No Deal Brexit would mean job cuts, higher prices in the shops, and risk our NHS being sold off to US corporations in a sweetheart deal with Donald Trump. The people of our country should decide who becomes the Prime Minister in a General Election."

Scottish Secretary David Mundell
"I congratulate Boris Johnson on his clear win in the leadership contest. Our party must now unite behind the new leader and Prime Minister, so we can get on with the job of delivering Brexit, whilst maintaining a strong United Kingdom."

DUP leader Arlene Foster
"Congratulations to Boris Johnson on becoming Conservative Party Leader. Look forward to discussing our shared objectives of strengthening the Union, delivering Brexit and restoring devolution."

Liberal Democrat MP Chuka Umunna
"I cannot think of a Tory leadership candidate more unfit to become the Prime Minister of this country than Boris Johnson, the worst Foreign Secretary of modern times who has caused huge offence to large numbers of our fellow citizens. A dark and depressing time for the UK."

Tory Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg
"It's a very good result, a very clear mandate which gives him authority within the party at large."

Former work and pensions secretary Esther McVey 
"Congratulations Boris. A decisive victory that will enable our new PM to unite the country, deliver Brexit and shape a path to prosperity which every citizen can be a part of. Let us all come together proud of who we are & what we have to offer & know our greatest days lie ahead."

Labour MP for Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford Yvette Cooper
"Even though we've known this moment was coming, this still feels deeply depressing for the future of our country."

Chief secretary to the Treasury, Liz Truss
"Great mandate for Boris Johnson to lead the Conservative Party and unite the country. Exciting times ahead."