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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 14 December 2018

UK party sacks leader in fallout from racist Meghan Markle texts

UKIP party leader had faced growing pressure to resign over offensive text messages sent by his girlfriend

UK Independence Party leader Henry Bolton speaks to the media after he lost the party leadership as party members backed a no confidence motion during a party Extraordinary General Meeting in Birmingham. Aaron Chown/ PA via AP
UK Independence Party leader Henry Bolton speaks to the media after he lost the party leadership as party members backed a no confidence motion during a party Extraordinary General Meeting in Birmingham. Aaron Chown/ PA via AP

The troubled UK Independence Party has ousted its leader after a scandal over racist messages sent by his girlfriend.

Party members voted on Saturday to back a motion of no confidence in Henry Bolton. The UKIP party leader had faced growing pressure to resign since a newspaper in mid-January published racist text messages about Prince Harry's fiancee, Meghan Markle, sent by his girlfriend, 25-year-old Jo Marney.

Ms Marney, who was also a UKIP member, was suspended immediately.

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Read more:

Racism scandal causes chaos in Eurosceptic party that changed Britain

UK party suspends leader's girlfriend over racist Meghan Markle remarks

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The right-wing, Eurosceptic party played a key role in campaigning for Britain's decision to leave the European Union but it has struggled to maintain its prominence and failed to win any parliamentary seats during last year's election.

Mr Bolton was its fourth leader since 2016, and the sacking puts the party in further uncertainty.