Liz Truss resignation: ‘I’m annoyed for her personally’ - world leaders react to Prime Minister's departure
From typically snarky remarks from Russian politicians – already not her greatest fans since she made a blooper over Russian and Ukrainian geography when she was foreign secretary – to personal regrets that she has stepped down, global leaders have spoken out to mark her resignation.
Many world leaders have expressed their concern the UK needs to find political stability as soon as possible amid global challenges such as the conflict in Ukraine and the cost-of-living crisis.
“On a personal level, I’m always sad to see a colleague go,” he said, arriving at an EU leaders’ summit in Brussels. “I’ve had the opportunity on many occasions to meet Liz Truss and we’ve been exchanging only this week.
“We were building a working relationship, and I wish in any case that Great Britain will find stability again and move on, as soon as possible. It’s good for us, and it’s good for our Europe.”
Mr Macron added: "I also want to say that France, as a friend of the British people, wishes for stability and in this context of war and tensions over the energy crisis, it is important that Great Britain sets out again on the path of political stability and that's all I wish for.”
Mr Macron’s relationship with Ms Truss has not always been as cordial. In August, he reacted with anger to claims Ms Truss – then foreign secretary, but in the running for the leadership – said the “jury is out” on whether he was a “friend or foe”.
Irish Prime Minister Micheal Martin also called for stability in British politics.
He said: "I think stability is very important and we would like to see the UK system within its capacity to have a successor selected as quickly as possible and that stability would be brought to the situation given the fairly significant geopolitical issues facing Europe, not least the war in Ukraine and the energy crisis.”
Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte said he was “annoyed” for Ms Truss’s experience. The centre-right politician previously had expressed his admiration for her after the leaders of 27 countries met in Prague earlier this month, saying he was “really impressed” and adding they had had a “fantastic meeting”.
He said: "I had a good contact with her … so I'm annoyed for her personally.
"We agreed on a whole range of views and I'm looking forward to work with who will be my next colleague. It will be the fifth one, I believe.”
US president Joe Biden thanked Ms Truss for holding Russia “accountable for its war against Ukraine” and reiterated the US’s close relationship with the UK.
He said: "The United States and the United Kingdom are strong allies and enduring friends – and that fact will never change.
"We will continue our close co-operation with the UK Government as we work together to meet the global challenges our nations face."
As when Boris Johnson departed the leadership, Russia reacted with delight at the announcement that Ms Truss had stood down, describing her as a "disgrace" of a leader who would be remembered for her "catastrophic illiteracy".
"Britain has never known such a disgrace of a prime minister," foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said. “The helmet onboard the tank, the catastrophic illiteracy, and the Queen's funeral right after the audience with Truss will be what's remembered of her.”
The claim of illiteracy referred to a visit Ms Truss made to Moscow before Russia invaded Ukraine, when in a meeting with Russia's veteran foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, she appeared to confuse two regions of Russia with Ukraine. Her mistake was mocked widely, both by the Russian diplomat and on Russian state TV.
Senior Russian politician Dmitry Medvedev tweeted: "Bye, bye @trussliz, congrats to lettuce," referring to the UK Daily Star's ongoing joke about whether a lettuce would last longer than Ms Truss's leadership.
Newspaper columnists across the world have also expressed their opinions.
Tom Rachman, columnist at Canada's Globe And Mail, said Brexit had “hastened the decline of a major power while thrusting dunces and charlatans into command".
He said: "Sadly, Britain cannot simply vote this mess off the island. Besides the ongoing costs of Brexit, this latest loss of credibility means billions more frittered on higher borrowing costs."
Mr Rachman suggested one economic boost was “obvious”.
He said: “Yet, few dare speak its name – re-joining the EU. Britain must summon courage now and view itself honestly. Government by lettuce, it turns out, leads only to the compost heap.”
Claudia Wanner of German paper Die Welt, wrote of the “stunning crash of Liz Truss”, but suggested the Government would not return to stability quickly.
"Never has a prime minister burned their political capital faster than Liz Truss,” she wrote. “After less than two months in power, the British Prime Minister's only option was to resign. For the British Conservatives, this is just the beginning of the problem.”
Sydney Morning Herald columnist Waleed Aly drew parallels with Australia's Liberal Party.
He said: "In a certain sense, this Tory nightmare really began with a loss – specifically David Cameron's lost gamble that he could put Brexit to bed. But Australia's Coalition found civil war in victory, especially on issues like climate change, which explains probably the key similarity we're now seeing.
"There's a certain Tory who feels the extremists are now in charge of their party, and who hopes that this crash landing might be the chance to remove them and restore a traditional Tory balance. There, as here, victor's remorse must inevitably become reduced to a loser's hope."
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