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Saturday, Aug 24, 2019

Boris’ domestic row hits bid to be UK PM

The row could not have come at a worse time for Johnson, who polled the most votes from 313 Conservative MPs in five rounds in the first of the two-phased election.

world Updated: Jun 23, 2019 07:00 IST
Police were called to the home of leadership candidate Boris Johnson. (REUTERS Photo)
Police were called to the home of leadership candidate Boris Johnson. (REUTERS Photo)( )
         

A loud altercation between Boris Johnson and his partner Carrie Symonds recorded by a neighbor prompted a visit by Scotland Yard on Friday, hitting his current campaign to be the next UK prime minister to replace Theresa May.

The row could not have come at a worse time for Johnson, who polled the most votes from 313 Conservative MPs in five rounds in the first of the two-phased election. Party members are now due to vote on the last two candidates, Johnson and foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Prone to gaffes in the past with his comments on Muslim women and on business in the context of Brexit, Johnson’s campaign managers have so far kept him away from most media appearances and television debates during the leadership election.

However, the domestic bust-up made banner headlines across the British news media on Saturday, with many questioning Johnson’s ability to lead the country. It came within hours of his party colleague, foreign office minister Mark Field being suspended for manhandling a protestor.

Scotland Yard said in a statement: “At 00:24hrs on Friday, 21 June, police responded to a call from a local resident in (south London). The caller was concerned for the welfare of a female neighbour”.

“Police attended and spoke to all occupants of the address, who were all safe and well. There were no offences or concerns apparent to the officers and there was no cause for police action.”

The Guardian reported that the police were called after Johnson’s neighbours heard a loud altercation involving screaming and shouting, including a woman screaming followed by “slamming and banging”.

One neighbor who recorded the noises is quoted in the report as saying: “There was a smashing sound of what sounded like plates. There was a couple of very loud screams that I’m certain were Carrie and she was shouting to ‘get out’ a lot”.

“She was saying ‘get out of my flat’ and he was saying no. And then there was silence after the screaming. My partner, who was in bed half asleep, had heard a loud bang and the house shook.”

Johnson, 55, began a relationship with Symonds, 31, last year, after initiating divorce proceedings against his Indian-origin wife, Marina Wheeler. Symonds, a former Conservative party communications chief, is part of Johnson’s current campaign in the leadership election.

First Published: Jun 22, 2019 10:20 IST

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