The war of words between the UK government and EU officials continues after Brexit Secretary David Davis accused Brussels of trying to bully British voters on Thursday (5 May) evening.

The senior Conservative's comments came as he defended Theresa May's claim that the EU leaked "misleading" accounts of a Downing Street dinner between EU Commission chief Jean Claude Juncker and the prime minister.

"Clearly what was happening was the commission was trying to bully the British people – and the British people will not be bullied, and the government will not allow them to be bullied," Davis told a BBC Question Time audience.

"So she made the point she made, and she was right to do so."

But May's vow to be a "bloody difficult woman" during the two-year long divorce talks with the EU has gone down badly in Brussels.

EU Council president Donald Tusk said the Tory premier was letting her "emotions get out of hand".

"These negotiations are difficult enough as they are. If we start arguing before they even begin, they will become impossible," he told a press conference. "The stakes are too high to let our emotions get out of hand."

The interventions from Brussels seem to have played into May's hands, domestically. Early results of the local and mayoral elections in England, Wales and Scotland have seen the Conservatives make large gains as the prime minister promises to deliver a Brexit.

The row also comes just five weeks before the general election on 8 June, where the Tories are expected to win a landslide. The latest YouGov poll, of more than 2,000 votes between 2 and 3 May, gave the Conservatives a 19 point lead over Labour (48% versus 29%).