From The Independent: The Tell Mama project, which monitors anti-Muslim violence, has reported an increase in incidents of abuse aimed at women wearing the niqab or hijab over the past week [since Boris Johnson‘s derogatory comments].
From The Guardian: Boris Johnson’s support among grassroots Conservatives, already resurgent in the wake of his resignation over Brexit, appears to have been bolstered further by his claim that Muslim women in burqas resemble letterboxes and bank robbers.
Tory activists have claimed that party members admire the former foreign secretary’s “straight talking” on the controversial issue and suggested his words implied he had listened to some of their concerns about community integration.
One senior grassroots activist said the membership was unlikely to be offended by his choice of language. “I doubt it. They’ll know what Boris is doing. They know how he operates – and they like it. The grassroots talk straight and polishing everything with Westminster-speak is not the way they do it. It won’t do him any harm.”
[Read full article on Guardian website…] Below: Guardian cartoon by Martin Rowson
In March, the then foreign secretary was forced to eat humble pie after referring to his Labour opposite number, Emily Thornberry, as the “Lady Baroness whatever” in the House of Commons – an apparent reference to the title of her husband, Sir Christopher Nugee.
His comment brought a sharp dressing down from the Speaker, John Bercow, who said his language was “inappropriate and frankly sexist”. A contrite Johnson insisted he had meant no harm and apologised “unreservedly” if he hurt Thornberry’s feelings.
More seriously, he faced calls to resign in November following claims that his careless comments about a British-Iranian woman held in Iran had jeopardised her chances of release. Giving evidence to the foreign affairs select committee, Johnson said Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe had been “training journalists” at the time of her arrest, even though she maintained she was on holiday.
Her dismayed family said the error had been seized upon by Iranian authorities as proof that she represented a threat to the government.
From Daily Mirror: Boris Johnson has refused to budge from his £20million taxpayer-funded mansion, as Downing Street admitted he could still be there for “weeks”. There is growing anger as he remains at the luxury official residence, despite resigning as Foreign Secretary 12 days ago.
The former foreign secretary failed to get permission from the government’s appointments watchdog for his role as a columnist for the Daily Telegraph.
Former ministers should apply to the advisory committee on business appointments (Acoba) before accepting a new role under the ministerial code.
Ministers who have been members of the cabinet should not accept new appointments for three months after leaving office.
Johnson returned to his £275,000-a-year Daily Telegraph column on Monday. He gave it up when he was appointed foreign secretary in July 2016.
A spokesman for Acoba said Johnson had not sought its advice, as required, before returning to the role, the Daily Mail reported.
“Ministers are written to on leaving office to remind them of the responsibility to follow the government’s rules set out in the ministerial code,” a spokesperson said.
From Channel 4 News Fact Check: Boris Johnson wrote: “If a country cannot pass a law to save the lives of female cyclists — when that proposal is supported at every level of UK Government — then I don’t see how that country can truly be called independent.”
The problem is, Mr Johnson is wrong.
Guardian editorial: “Mr Johnson is the most overrated politician in Britain, especially by himself. He was an embarrassingly useless foreign secretary. He diminished Britain’s standing in the world and he diminished his own reputation by the way he played his role, not least by his praise for Donald Trump. He was simply not up to the job. But Boris Johnson does not do serious. He does self-interest. The British government is better off without him. The Tory party should not deceive itself that he is the answer to its problems.”
The prime minister hammered out a compromise with her deeply divided cabinet in an all-day meeting at Chequers on Friday, but after consulting friends and allies since, Johnson decided he could not promote the deal.
A Downing Street spokesman said: “This afternoon, the prime minister accepted the resignation of Boris Johnson as foreign secretary. His replacement will be announced shortly. The prime minister thanks Boris for his work.”
After the Chequers summit, it emerged that Johnson had referred to attempts to sell the prime minister’s Brexit plan as ‘polishing a turd’.
His resignation follows that of the Brexit secretary, David Davis, and his No 2 at the Department for Exiting the EU, Steve Baker.
From Daily Telegraph: Boris Johnson was embroiled in a diplomatic row with Brussels on Friday night after he was accused of using a four-letter F-word to dismiss an ambassador’s question about the post-Brexit needs of British business.
“Imagine Trump doing Brexit,” Johnson said. “He’d go in bloody hard… There’d be all sorts of breakdowns, all sorts of chaos. Everyone would think he’d gone mad. But actually you might get somewhere. It’s a very, very good thought.”
Boris Johnson has done a runner from the UK House of Commons to avoid Emily Thornberry's Urgent Question on Gaza. This is now the second time a Cabinet minister has dodged a question in a week.MORE: https://on.rt.com/952i
Posted by Independent Media on Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Boris Johnson slated for congratulating racist, authoritarian Hungarian leader for disputed election win
From The Guardian: Boris Johnson has been criticised for congratulating Hungary’s Viktor Orbán on his election victory, despite harsh criticism from international observers who noted the campaign’s intimidating and xenophobic rhetoric.
The foreign secretary tweeted congratulations to Orbán, who will now serve a third consecutive term as prime minister, having campaigned with his Fidesz party almost exclusively on an anti-migration platform.
“Congratulations to Fidesz and Viktor Orbán on winning the elections in Hungary,” Johnson tweeted. “We look forward to working with our Hungarian friends to further develop our close partnership.”
Within hours of Boris Johnson’s tweet, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) criticised the conduct seen during the Hungarian election campaign, saying there was “intimidating and xenophobic rhetoric, media bias and opaque campaign financing”.
Speaker Bercow intervened – to applause from some Labour MPs – after Mr Johnson referred to shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry as Lady Nugee.
Ms Thornberry is married to High Court judge Sir Christopher Nugee – but chooses to go by her maiden name.
Mr Bercow said it was “inappropriate” and sexist to refer to her as Lady Nugee.
The wife of a minister in Vladimir Putin’s government donated £160,000 to the UK Tory party for a game of tennis with Boris Johnson.
Andrew Marr says to Boris Johnson in this video: “Labour says that part of the hesitation in this is that you as a party have been taking far too much Russian money.”
Sky News has learnt that Foreign Office officials told Ireland’s Government “not to listen to whatever he had to say” ahead of Mr Johnson’s visit to Dublin a few weeks ago.
Extraordinarily, officials in Whitehall were very open with their counterparts in the Irish capital to “ignore the public utterances” of Britain’s chief diplomat.
Ahead of the visit, Irish officials were told “not to mind a word of what he says” – implying the Foreign Secretary was not speaking on behalf of the UK Government.
Jeremy Corbyn writes in the Observer: “Theresa May should never have appointed someone as Britain’s top diplomat who had accused Barack Obama of being anti-British because he’s ‘part-Kenyan’, and notoriously wrote about ‘flag-waving piccaninnies’.
“Now, after 16 months of the foreign secretary damaging Britain’s standing in the world, she should sack him.
From Daily Mirror: Boris Johnson‘s bid to boost Anglo-Spanish relations backfired spectacularly when he launched into a bizarre defence of bullfighting, telling a dinner to celebrate ties between the nations that trying to ban the cruel sport was “political correctness gone mad”.
From The Independent: Boris Johnson has said he was “very disappointed” and “mystified” by the planned closure of a police station in his constituency – despite it being shut as part of a policy he introduced as Mayor of London.
From New Statesman: A former British ambassador, requesting anonymity, called Boris Johnson “the least deserving and least qualified foreign secretary of modern times, who has successfully lived down to all expectations”. A senior European diplomat based in London concurred, saying that Johnson was “not taken seriously as a foreign policy actor” and was damaging British interests. He reckoned that three-fifths of the 27 EU ambassadors in London quite like Johnson but consider him ill-suited to the job, while the remaining two-fifths “positively dislike him”.