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Sevenoaks MP Michael Fallon new defence secretary as Ashford MP Damian Green and Faversham and Mid Kent MP Hugh Robertson lose jobs in reshuffle

Sevenoaks MP Michael Fallon has been promoted to defence secretary in today's government reshuffle.

The former business and energy minister's move comes as two other Kent MPs were ousted from ministerial positions in Prime Minister David Cameron's most savage ministerial cull since taking office.

Mr Fallon replaces Philip Hammond, who has taken over from William Hague as foreign secretary.

Last night, policing minister Damian Green, who represents Ashford, and Foreign Office minister Hugh Robertson, who represents Faversham and Mid Kent, lost their jobs.

They were just one of a number of high-profile casualties of the reshuffle - dubbed a cull of "the white middle aged men".

Meanwhile, Tunbridge Wells MP Greg Clark has been named science and universities minister. He has also been named minister at the Cabinet Office - and will attend all cabinet meetings.

Mr Green has held a number of positions in the shadow cabinet, including shadow secretary of state for education and skills from 2001 to 2003, shadow secretary of state for transport between 2003 and 2004 and shadow minister for immigration from 2005 to 2010.

He was also immigration minister from May 2010 to September 2012.

Ashford MP Damian Green
Ashford MP Damian Green

Mr Green said on Twitter this morning: "To those kindly inquiring I am out but not down. Still believe everything I believed yesterday and will carry on fighting for it."

Kent Police Federation tweeted last night it was a shame Mr Green had gone, as he had been "a voice of reason" adding: "Often he would be a sole voice of reason as others tried to taint every cop."

Redditch County MP Karen Lumley is tipped to replace Mr Green as police minister.

Faversham's MP Hugh Robertson
Faversham's MP Hugh Robertson

Mr Robertson was previously sports and minister and was the minister with day-to-day responsibility for the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games.

He was appointed a Foreign Office minister with special responsibility for the Middle East less than a year ago.

The 51-year-old is understood to be in Lebanon on an official visit. An MP since 2001, the former officer in the Life Guards served in the first Gulf War.

In a resignation letter to Mr Cameron, he said he wanted to spend more time with his family.

KM Group political editor Paul Francis said there was general surprise that Mr Green had gone, given his lack of "howlers" in the role.

He added: "The irony is that Mr Green will approve of bringing more women into government but has paid the price for doing so."

William Hague is quitting as Foreign Secretary
William Hague is quitting as Foreign Secretary

Earlier, veteran Tory Ken Clarke stood down from his role as minister without portfolio while David Jones has lost his job as Welsh secretary.

Other Conservative MPs to have lost their jobs include David Willetts as universities minister, Nick Hurd as civil society Minister and Alan Duncan as international development minister.

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