UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson accused of groping journalist

Updated: Oct 01, 2019, 08:35 IST | Agencies | London

The incident allegedly took place when the journalist worked at The Spectator while Johnson was its editor

Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson

London: Prime Minister Boris Johnson faced political opposition and personal allegations on Monday as he tried to fulfil his pledge to lead UK out of the European Union in just over a month.

The PM's office denied a journalist's claim that Johnson grabbed her thigh at a private lunch two decades ago. Sunday Times columnist Charlotte Edwardes says the incident took place when she worked at magazine The Spectator while Johnson was its editor.

Asked Monday if the allegation was true, Johnson said: "No." Edwardes responded by tweeting: "If the prime minister doesn't recollect the incident then clearly I have a better memory than he does."

The allegations overshadowed the Conservative Party's four-day annual conference in Manchester, where Johnson is trying to rally the party under the slogan "Get Brexit Done."
Treasury chief Sajid Javid said he had "full faith in the PM," adding: "I don't think it's a good idea to get drawn into personal allegations." But Health Secretary Matt Hancock said he knew Edwardes, and "I entirely trust what she has to say."

It grabbed the front pages of several left-leaning dailies. "An abuse of power," The Daily Mirror screamed in bold print. "Prime minister forced into denial of claims that he groped two women," The Guardian splashed across its front page.

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