Another tumultuous day in British politics has once again captured headlines around the world – with papers and leader writers giving their assessment of the unfolding drama.
In the UK, the Daily Mail takes a firm stance on the bid by Eurosceptics to oust Prime Minister Theresa May over her Brexit deal, describing them as “preening Tory saboteurs” looking to undermine the PM, their party and the country’s future.
“Contrast the calmness and composure of Mrs May with the shrill baying of the peacocking saboteurs. What do these low-grade assassins offer as an alternative?,” the paper questions in a front-page comment.
Their plan is an “economic suicide note”, the leader adds, suggesting that anyone who thinks there is any other option than the PM’s deal, no deal or no Brexit has “lost the plot”.
The Times columnist Philip Collins also criticises “deluded” Brexiteers, and questions whether any of them have come up with a viable alternative.
“Not one prominent advocate of Brexit has been able to articulate a plan that has the remotest hope of passing through Parliament,” he writes.
Because of the “intransigent stupidity of the Tory ideologues”, there are now just two options left, he adds.
“Britain either leaves without a deal or Britain breaks out of the impasse by returning the question to the people.”
The paper’s leader says despite her plan appearing “dead in the water”, all may not be lost for Mrs May.
“The idea that a new prime minister could deliver a significantly better deal looks fanciful,” it says. “Mrs May is surely right that her deal really is the best that could be negotiated with Brussels.”
Not all papers are as supportive of the PM, however, with the Daily Telegraph’s leader warning that even if Mrs May survives the challenge to her leadership, “it won’t alter the facts of the crisis that triggered it”.
“The withdrawal deal she has cooked up is a bad one and it has more opponents than supporters in Parliament”, it says, and questions whether her deal has satisfied any group of voters at all.
Former Labour prime minister Tony Blair writes in the paper that Britain has become “an object of bemused pity” in the international arena, and renews his call for a second referendum.
The Daily Mirror runs with a front-page headline of “Stumped”, a pun on Mrs May comparing herself to cricketer Geoffrey Boycott, and says in a comment inside that her “desperate defiance is the weakness of a stubborn, tin-eared leader unable or unwilling to embrace reality”.
“Her authority has gone, shot, finished, when there is not a cat in hell’s chance of persuading Parliament to back a near universally condemned Brexit,” it adds.
The Sun remains critical of the “many flaws” in the PM’s deal, but admits “we cannot help but admire the extraordinary resilience and even good humour she showed for hours on end” as events unfolded on Thursday.
Brexit continues to make headlines across the world, too, with several newspapers in Europe featuring the latest developments on their front pages.
Most have played the tale with a straight bat, with Austrian paper Die Presse describing Mrs May’s “struggle for survival”, and Spain’s El Pais reporting that a day of resignations had “muddied” the Brexit deal.
Germany’s Neus Deutschland says resistance to the deal had triggered a “British government crisis”, while France’s Le Figaro describes Mrs May as “alone against the world”.