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Angela Eagle formally launches Labour leadership bid

Angela Eagle has formally launched her bid to oust Jeremy Corbyn Photo: PA

Angela Eagle has formally launched her bid to oust Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party.

In a speech in London, the former shadow cabinet minister said that she would be able to "bring our party together again".

Her announcement looks set to trigger civil war within the party, with Mr Corbyn likely to fight to ensure that his name is on the ballot paper for a vote of the party's members, among whom he has strong support.

Ms Eagle's leadership bid comes after 172 Labour MPs indicated that they had no confidence in Mr Corbyn in a vote in which he garnered the support of just 40 Westminster colleagues.

She said:

I am not here for a Labour Party that just takes part. I'm here to win. I will not stand back and allow Britain to become a one-party Tory state. We owe too much to the millions in our country who look to us to help them make a better life.

This is certainly about uniting Labour but it's about much more than that. It's about our democracy as well as our party. It's about giving hope to people all over the country that Labour can be an alternative government, ready and equipped to serve.

The blunt truth is the country does not believe that when they look at us right now. But they will if I win this fight. And I need your help to win it.

I need those who want a better Labour Party and a better politics to join Labour now, to help me change Labour for the better.

I am a person who brings people together, I don't drive them apart. I will unite, I will not divide. I can bring our party together again.

A kinder politics must be a reality, not just an empty slogan. The Tories may play out their game of thrones. But they have nothing to offer on the questions this country now faces.

I love my party and I love my country. We are at a crossroads. I am ready to lead.

– Angela Eagle

Angela Eagle insisted she has not embarked on a political "suicide mission" as she launched her bid to topple Jeremy Corbyn.

The former shadow business secretary said she could make Labour electable again after the "howl of pain" expressed in the Brexit vote.

"I don't go in for suicide missions," Ms Eagle said when asked if her chances were doomed if Mr Corbyn is allowed on the ballot paper.

Ms Eagle insisted it was a matter for the party's national executive committee whether Mr Corbyn needed to be nominated by 51 MPs and MEPs to be allowed to stand as a candidate.

Taking a swipe at Mr Corbyn, Ms Eagle said:

A kinder politics must be a reality, not just a slogan.

– Angela Eagle