The Brexit Party was the clear winner in the UK’s European elections, with the pro-European Union (EU) Lib Dems coming second.
The Conservatives and Labour suffered heavy losses, with the former expected to get less than 10 per cent of the vote.
Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage said he was ready to “take on” the Tories and Labour in a general election.
So far, Mr Farage’s party has won 29 seats, the Lib Dems 16, Labour 10, Greens seven, the Tories four, the SNP three and Plaid Cymru one.
Mr Farage told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “With a big, simple message – which is we’ve been badly let down by two parties who have broken their promises – we have topped the poll in a fairly dramatic style.
“The two party system now serves nothing but itself. I think they are an obstruction to the modernising of politics… and we are going to take them on.”
Leader of the Liberal Democrats, Sir Vince Cable, said he was “pleasantly surprised” by his party’s performance last night.
He told BBC News: “It was fairly clear we had momentum and were doing well, but I was delighted by the scale of the popular vote and the seats we have won.
“The bigger picture is, if you take the Remain parties as a whole, we have had a very strong turnout, a very good result and we are now demonstrating that there is a majority of people in the country who don’t want to leave the European Union now.”
Polling expert Sir John Curtice said the results showed just how polarised the country had become.
Prime Minister Theresa May tried three times to secure MPs’ backing for her Brexit plan and resigned as prime minister after her fourth attempt prompted a big backlash.
She tweeted disappointment about the result for the Conservatives.
All 28 EU member states are electing MEPs to the European Parliament – the EU’s law-making body. Overall, the big centre-right and centre-left blocs lost ground, amid a surge in support for liberals, Greens and nationalists.
The UK had been due to leave the EU on 29 March, but when that deadline was missed, participation in the election became mandatory.
The Brexit Party topped the polls in every region of England apart from London. It also dominated in Wales, with Plaid Cymru second. –BBC