UK: Ed Miliband is new Labour leader

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UK: Ed Miliband is new Labour leader

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Britain’s former Energy secretary Ed Miliband has been voted the new leader of the opposition Labour party.

He beat his older brother David Miliband into second place passing the 50 per cent winning line by a hair’s breadth – just 1.3 percentage points.

The 40 year old is seen as leaning further to the left than his brother, securing him the support of the trade union vote.

The result was announced as the party’s annual conference got underway in Manchester.

Among the speeches the focus was on unifying a party that, under Gordon Brown, suffered a shattering defeat in May’s election after 13 years in power.

Ed Miliband told the conference hall: “Today’s election turns a page. Because a new generation has stepped forward. To serve our party, and in time I hope to serve our country. Today, the work of a new generation begins.”

He is the youngest of all Labour leaders since World War Two, and his main task now is to challenge the coalition government’s deep public spending cuts.

He has proposed higher taxes – especially for banks – to help reduce Britain’s massive budget deficit.