Early results in Britain’s EU referendum showed stronger-than-expected support for Brexit. But votes will be counted throughout the night until a final result is declared in the morning. Read the latest from our teams.
While two different polls put “Remain” ahead of “Leave,” some of the first results declared in the EU referendum were disappointing to the Remain campaign. Unlike in general elections, there is no exit poll and the referendum’s final result is not expected until Friday morning. So here’s some key background information as we go into the night:
– The British enclave Gibraltar, located at the southern tip of Spain, became the first to declare, and came out with a overwhelming majority for “Remain.” Yet other council results appeared to point to a “Leave” direction.
– After initial gains, the pound plummeted in trading, reflecting trader beliefs Britain might in fact have decided to leave the EU.
– Roughly 46.5 million people were eligible to vote. Preliminary assessments indicated a very high voter turnout – as high as 80 percent in some areas.
– Rain and thunderstorms were impacting ballot casting early in the morning as well as in the evening: A few polling stations had to close because of the rains, and voters were re-directed to other stations. With public transport hampered in London in the evening, some voters were stuck, which may have impacted turnout among those intending to cast their ballots after work.
– German Chancellor Angela Merkel, among other European leaders, has said she would “like for Britain to remain in the EU.”
DW’s online and TV teams in London and Brussels will keep you abreast of developments during counting night and into Friday as the UK and EU’s futures become clear. Scroll down to our live blog below.