Boris Johnson latest news: Latest updates as Sue Gray party report looms

‘I really do not know’: MP Thérèse Coffey unaware of when Sue Gray report will be published

The wait for Sue Gray’s Partygate findings may continue into next week with Boris Johnson, who has departed London for a visit to North Wales, yet to have been handed the full report.

With the prime minister hundreds of miles from parliament, all signs pointed to a further delay to the publication of the Cabinet Office investigation.

Officials in Westminster are now said to believe the document may not become public until next week, due to a process of “legal scrubbing” currently taking place. This ensures that the final report does not unfairly identify junior staff or cut across the separate investigation by Metropolitan Police.

It comes as Boris Johnson dismissed new evidence that he ordered the controversial evacuation of dogs and cats from Afghanistan as “total rhubarb”.

Internal emails released to the public this week show officials saying the prime minister has “authorized” resources to be directed to getting the animals out of the country – a claim he previously denied.

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Javid avoids questions on Sue Gray report

Sajid Javid has avoided answering whether the Sue Gray report was being deliberately delayed.

During a visit to a pharmacy in west London on Friday, the health secretary was asked if government lawyers are deliberately trying to hold up the report to buy the government time.

Mr Javid told broadcasters: “I think it’s absolutely right that we’re having this investigation and the report, whenever it’s ready, as the prime minister said, the report will be published in full.

“He’s also [said]quite rightly, that as soon as the report is complete, he will be coming right back to Parliament, after everyone’s had the chance to read the report, and putting himself under the maximum scrutiny, and I think that’s the right way forward. ”

Tom Batchelor27 January 2022 16:20

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Everything we know about Boris Johnson’s alleged Downing Street lockdown parties

Boris Johnson remains trapped in a fight for his political life amid public anger over reports of a series of rule-breaking Downing Street parties.

The prime minister’s fate may depend on the outcome of senior civil servant Sue Gray’s inquiry into the affair.

Here is a roundup of everything we know so far:

Tom Batchelor27 January 2022 16:15

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PM visits recycling center and RAF base

During his visit to Wales, the prime minister visited a waste recycling center on Anglesey.

Mr Johnson did not take questions from the media while on site.

He left the site after his 30-minute visit to travel the short distance to RAF Valley to continue his visit to North Wales.

Tom Batchelor27 January 2022 16:00

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Full transcript of PM’s remarks on Sue Gray report

Here is the full transcript from Boris Johnson’s interview in North Wales.

Reporter: Are you delaying the Sue Gray report?

PM: “Absolutely not. But you’ll just have to … I’m afraid you’ve got to let the independent inquiries go on. “

Reporter: When do you think it will be published?

PM: “I wish … I can not really say any more than what I said yesterday about that. I’m really … ”

Reporter: Will you publish it in full?

Reporter: The report, as exactly as Sue Gray hands to you, that will be made public without any redactions?

PM: “I can not go beyond what I said yesterday, but I stick completely by what I said to the House of Commons.”

Tom Batchelor27 January 2022 15:45

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Blair: Partygate ‘is not something for me to get into’

Tony Blair has declined to comment on Boris Johson’s turmoil and the issue of parties held at Downing Street during Covid lockdowns.

Asked on CNN what he made of the latest revelations and whether he now wanted to offer his thoughts on the matter, the former prime minister said: “No. It’s not something for me to get into. Because frankly it makes no difference what I say anyway. ”

Tom Batchelor27 January 2022 15:29

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Fresh emails cast doubt on Johnson’s Afghan evacuation denial

Fresh evidence has emerged suggesting No 10 was involved in the airlift of animals out of Afghanistan.

Yesterday, an email shared with a Commons inquiry showed a Foreign Office official saying in August that the PM had just “authorized” the animals’ rescue.

Now, the BBC has reported another email from the same day saying Dominic Raab was “seeking a steer from No 10 on whether” to call animal charity Nowzad staff forward.

“The FS is seeking a steer from No 10 on whether to call them forward now,” it read.

Another email from Nigel Casey, the PM’s special representative to Afghanistan and Pakistan, showed him asking the national security adviser “to seek clear guidance for us from No 10 asap on what they would like us to do”.

Tom Batchelor27 January 2022 15:15

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Boris Johnson fuels speculation that National Insurance rise may be ditched

Boris Johnson has again fueled speculation that he could scrap the National Insurance rise planned for April by refusing to guarantee it will go ahead.

The prime minister is coming under intense pressure to ditch or delay the 2.5 per cent hike, split between employees and employers, with reports suggesting many Tory backbenchers are making it a condition of their support in the expected confidence vote on his leadership.

Pressure on Chancellor Rishi Sunak to scrap the rise heightened after official figures this week showed a £ 13bn windfall from lower-than-expected borrowing. Business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng and leader of the Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg are understood to be among those urging him to use the additional leeway to ease pressure on households facing a cost-of-living crisis.

Our political editor, Andrew Woodcock, has the full story below:

Thomas Kingsley27 January 2022 15:00

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Brexit checks at Dover mean lorry queues ‘only going to get longer’, says union

Brexit controls are behind the huge lorry queues leading up to Dover and delays are “going to get longer”, a union representing drivers has said.

Unite said the full customs controls brought in after Brexit is causing significant hold-ups at the port – with each driver taking 10 to 20 minutes to clear checks.

Adrian Jones, Unite’s national officer for road transport, told The Independent: “The queues and the delays are only going to get longer as both tourism the commercial trade pick up in the weeks ahead.”.

Our political correspondent, Adam Forresthas the full report below:

Thomas Kingsley27 January 2022 14:45

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Sue Gray report must be released ‘in full as soon as Boris Johnson receives it,’ Nicola Sturgeon says

The Sue Gray report into lockdown Covid parties must be published “in full” and as soon as Boris Johnson receives it, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

Nicola Sturgeon told ITV Border on Thursday: “The report should be published immediately after Boris Johnson receives it and published in full.

“The longer he was to sit on it the more suspicion people would have about what he might be doing to it.”

However she also said that regardless of the report by Sue Gray, the prime minister “misled parliament”.

“But I think it’s really hard to imagine anything she could say that would change what we already know from what’s on the record and that’s that Boris Johnson misled parliament and I think that’s the severity of the position he’s in.”

Thomas Kingsley27 January 2022 14:30

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Watch: Boris Johnson says claim he intervened in Afghan animal airlift is ‘total rhubarb’

Boris Johnson says claim he intervened in Afghan animal airlift is ‘total rhubarb’

Thomas Kingsley27 January 2022 14:15

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