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Summary

  1. Carwyn Jones is to step down as Wales' first minister after nearly nine years in office
  2. The announcement shocked delegates at the Welsh Labour conference
  3. He had been under pressure since Carl Sargeant was found dead days after being sacked from the cabinet
  4. Mr Jones said the last few months had been the "darkest of times"
  5. He had been first minister since 2009

Live Reporting

By Rachel Flint, Andy Roberts and David Deans

All times stated are UK

Goodbye

Thanks for following our live coverage today - you can follow proceedings as the Welsh Labour conference in Llandudno continues on Sunday with a speech by Jeremy Corbyn.

See the BBC News website for updates and a live webcast of the conference.

There will be highlights and reaction on Sunday Politics Wales on BBC One Wales at 14:15 BST

Carwyn Jones steps down - the main points

We've been covering today's breaking news that Carwyn Jones is stepping down as Welsh Labour leader and first minister in the autumn after nearly nine years in charge.

He stunned delegates with the announcement during his keynote speech to the Welsh Labour conference in Llandudno.

Mr Jones has been under pressure since the death in November of former communities secretary Carl Sargeant, who was found dead four days after he was sacked from the cabinet amid allegations of inappropriate conduct towards women.

Referring to the death of Mr Sargeant, the first minister said it had been the "darkest of times".

Mr Jones said his departure would give his family, his party and the country a "fresh start".

Referring to his wife and family, he told conference: "I don't think anyone can know what the last few months have been like - no one apart from Lisa and the kids."

UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn paid tribute to Mr Jones's "tireless commitment to making Wales a more equal country".

Carwyn Jones stands down after 'the darkest of times'

'Joint efforts to resist power grab'

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has tweeted her best wishes to Carwyn Jones, saying she has enjoyed working with him on negotiations with the UK government over Brexit.

My very best wishes to @fmwales. Despite our differing party allegiances, I have enjoyed working with him - particu… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…

'Served with dedication'

Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Jane Dodds says Carwyn Jones "should be applauded for his long record of public service" as he announces his decision to step down as first minister.

"He has served with dedication and has clearly left his mark", she adds.

View more on twitter

'Mature partnership'

Welsh Secretary Alun Cairns paid tribute to Carwyn Jones for the good working relationship they have had, which he hoped would continue with Mr Jones's successor as first minister when he steps down in the autumn.

“My relationship with the First Minister has always been positive, pragmatic and driven by a mutual desire to get the best outcome for the Welsh people," Mr Cairns said.

“As Brexit approaches, I hope to take on the mature partnership I have always had with the First Minister and ensure that, working with his successor, we can take full advantage of the new opportunities for Wales."

Alun Cairns
BBC

'Serve the people of Wales'

Health Secretary Vaughan Gething - who has been tipped as a contender to succeed Carwyn Jones - says Welsh Labour must continue its mission to "serve the people of Wales".

Referring to the ongoing fallout over the death of his former cabinet colleague Carl Sargeant, he told BBC Wales: "Our job in government isn't just about that one tragic event".

View more on twitter

'Strong foundation' for new leader

Carwyn Jones has left a "strong foundation" for the next leader, says Swansea West MP Geraint Davies.

Mr Jones will step down as first minister and Welsh Labour leader in the autumn.

Mr Davies tweeted: "Carwyn Jones has been a great First Minister, delivering a fairer stronger Wales over the past decade".

Carwyn Jones has been a great First Minister, delivering a fairer stronger Wales over the past decade, and deserves… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…

'Avoided the fate of Labour in Scotland'

Newport West MP Paul Flynn pays tribute to Carwyn Jones and his late predecessor as first minister Rhodri Morgan for ensuring the party's survival in Wales

View more on twitter

Contenders considering

Our political correspondent reports support for Mark Drakeford to stand for the Welsh Labour leadership, while junior minister and former MP Huw Irranca-Davies is considering a bid

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Corbyn thanks Carwyn for 'tireless commitment'

UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has thanked Carwyn Jones for his commitment to Wales.

Mr Jones will step down as first minister and Welsh labour leader in the autumn.

Mr Corbyn said: "I would like to thank Carwyn Jones for his service as leader of Welsh Labour and First Minister of Wales.

"Carwyn has led Welsh Labour to achieve unprecedented electoral success, forming two Labour Welsh Assembly governments.

"Over the last nine years he has stood up to Tory austerity and stood up for the people of Wales as a strong voice for devolution and democracy.

"In the face of the Conservatives' cuts from Westminster, his government has invested in jobs and infrastructure through the National Development Bank for Wales, protected free school meals and free prescriptions.

"Welsh Labour introduced an organ donation opt-out law and children's burial fund, paving the way for their introduction across the UK.

"Carwyn has been a staunch advocate of a jobs-first Brexit which works for Wales, including continued membership of a customs union.

"I pay tribute to Carwyn for his tireless commitment to making Wales a more equal country which works for the many, not the few."

Jeremy Corbyn and Carwyn Jones
BBC

Timeline: The death of Carl Sargeant

Carwyn Jones's announcement he will step down as first minister comes months after the death of former communities secetary Carl Sargeant.

The Alyn and Deeside AM was found dead in November days after Mr Jones sacked him from the cabinet amid allegations of his conduct towards women.

Mr Jones said the last few months had been the "darkest of times".

His actions have come under scrutiny and an inquiry is due to begin in to events surrounding Carl Sargeant's sacking and subsequent death.

Here is a timeline of events.

Carl Sargeant
BBC

'My last conference as leader'

This is the moment Carwyn Jones shocked delegates at the Welsh Labour conference in Llandudno by announcing his intention to stand down.

He had been under pressure since former minister Carl Sargeant was found dead four days after being sacked from the cabinet by Mr Jones in November.

Mr Jones told conference he had been through the "darkest of times".

View more on twitter

'Should be applauded'

The Welsh Liberal Democrats wish Carwyn Jones well as he announces his decision to step down as first minister.

The First Minister should be applauded for his long record of public service to Wales. As one of the original Assem… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…

'Decent bloke'

Carwyn Jones's special advisor Matt Greenough said he was the "most decent bloke" he had ever met.

Even before @fmwales started speaking today it was the warmest, loveliest of welcomes in Llandudno. I really do lov… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…

Will Drakeford stand?

BBC Welsh affairs editor Vaughan Roderick suggests Finance Secretary Mark Drakeford is in "pole position" as the next Welsh Labour leader in view of his experience and support for Jeremy Corbyn. But he wonders if he wants the job, saying "politics waits for no man."

Vaughan Roderick considers who could be Wales' next first minister

'No cloud over his head'

Ogmore MP Chris Elmore says Carwyn Jones was "honest" about the toll being first minister had on his family life.

"I don't think there's any suggestion about a cloud hanging over his head...the key thing is Carwyn has achieved an awful lot."

Chris Elmore
BBC

The Corbynista factor

Prof Roger Awan-Scully of Cardiff University's Wales Governance Centre has run his eye over the possible contenders for the Welsh Labour leadership as Carwyn Jones steps down.

He notes that cabinet ministers Mark Drakeford, Vaughan Gething and Ken Skates have been tipped in recent times.

"There are no currently obvious great ideological distinctions between the potential candidates, but some may find themselves tempted in any contest to steer towards the ‘Corbynista’ wing of the party," he writes on his blog.

Read more from Prof Roger Awan-Scully

Roger Awan-Scully
BBC

'Still unanswered questions'

There are still unanswered questions about the death of Carl Sargeant, a former minister has said after Carwyn Jones's announcement.

Ex-education minister Leighton Andrews claimed there had been a "bullying culture" at the top of the Welsh Government in 2014, alleging that Mr Sargeant had been one of the targets.

These last five plus months have been very difficult, and there are still unanswered questions which the Bowen inqu… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…

'Nothing changes'

The son of Carl Sargeant has said that "nothing changes - the inquiries are still relevant and should continue" in the wake of Carwyn Jones's announcement that he is stepping down as Welsh Labour leader and first minister.

Jack Sargeant won the by-election for his father's vacant seat as AM for Alyn and Deeside in February.

The vote followed the death of Carl Sargeant four days after he was sacked from the cabinet by Mr Jones amid allegations of inappropriate behaviour towards women.

Jack Sargeant's lawyers complained on Friday about delays to the start of the independent inquiry into events surrounding the November reshuffle, and claimed Mr Jones's own conduct had caused "considerable distress" to the family.

Jack Sargeant
BBC

Plaid AM suspects pressure from party

Plaid Cymru AM Bethan Sayed tweeted her response to Carwyn Jones's decision to step down as Welsh Labour leader and first minister.

Can hear the conversation in the Labour group meeting. ‘ we will support you carwyn on leak inquiry not being rele… twitter.com/i/web/status/9…

'Immense' contribution

Labour's shadow Welsh Secretary Christina Rees said: "Carwyn's contribution to both Welsh Labour and Welsh public life has been immense.

"His government has improved the life chances of people across our country, and as his speech today showed, continues to deliver for those people who need us most."

Christina Rees
BBC

'Wales needs more than a change of leader'

Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood AM said: "I congratulate Carwyn Jones on his nine years as First Minister of Wales and wish him and his family the best for the future.

"Wales' government has been led by the Labour Party for nineteen years. Over that time our economy, our NHS, our schools and our local services have been allowed to weaken and diminish. People and our community infrastructure have fallen further and further behind.

"Wales needs more than a change of leader. We need a new government with the ideas, the values and the drive to build our nation into the successful country we know it could be.

"Wales can and must be better than this - rearranging the deckchairs will not deliver the change we need."

Leanne Wood
BBC

'Led with passion'

The new deputy leader of Welsh Labour Carolyn Harris said the first minister was a "towering figure in Welsh politics".

He announced he would step down in the autumn shortly after was appointed to the role at the Welsh Labour party conference.

Ms Harris said: "As Welsh Labour leader and first minister for almost a decade, he has led both our party and our country with passion, commitment and integrity.

"I know his commitment to Wales and to Welsh Labour will remain as burning as ever, and I will be working with him in the months ahead to ensure Welsh Labour keeps delivering for Wales."

Carolyn Harris
BBC

'Much to be proud for'

Health Secretary Vaughan Gething has been tipped as a possible future Welsh Labour leader, but is not revealing his intentions yet.

View more on twitter
Vaughan Gething
BBC

'No idea'

BBC Wales political editor says Carwyn Jones's cabinet were not aware of the bombshell their leader was about to drop.

View more on twitter

'Significant service'

Welsh Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies paid tribute to Carwyn Jones's contribution to Welsh political life after he announced his decision to step down as first minister.

View more on twitter

Death of a minister

Carwyn Jones's future as first minister has been under pressure since November, when he sacked Carl Sargeant as cabinet secretary for communities and children amid allegations of inappropriate conduct towards women. Mr Sargeant, who was AM for Alyn and Deeside, was found dead four days later - he is believed to have killed himself.

Carl Sargeant
BBC

'Fresh start'

Mr Jones, who has been first minister and Welsh Labour leader since 2009, said his exit would give his family, his party and the country a "fresh start".

Referring to his wife and family, he told party delegates: "I don't think anyone can know what the last few months have been like - no one apart from Lisa and the kids.

"They have carried me through the darkest of times. I have asked too much of them at times. It's time for me to think about what's fair to them."

Carwyn Jones
BBC

'I don't think anyone can know what the last few months have been like'

Carwyn Jones used his keynote speech to the Welsh Labour conference in Llandudno to announce his decision to step down as leader and first minister.

Carwyn Jones stands down after 'the darkest of times'

'Darkest days'

Mr Jones said he would step down for the good of his family after the "darkest of days".

It comes after the death of Carl Sargeant in November days after he was sacked from the cabinet by Mr Jones.

Carwyn Jones to step down

Hello,

Welcome to our live coverage of reaction after Carwyn Jones announced he would step down as Wales' first minister in the autumn.

He made the announcement at the Welsh Labour party conference.