Another day, another scandal involving British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Hours before Sue Gray was due to publish her report on the lockdown parties that Johnson or members of his entourage organized, British media reported that the prime minister intervened personally to have animals evacuated from Afghanistan.
As late as December, BoJo dismissed claims by a State Department whistleblower who said the government chose animals over humans as “complete nonsense.”
Sky News is now aware of new emails released by Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee. The committee is investigating how London dealt with the Afghanistan crisis last summer. On August 25, an official at a Foreign Office sent an email to the service responsible for evacuating “special cases” from Afghanistan. It asks that a certain animal charity be able to evacuate its staff and animals. The mail refers to the evacuation that a similar organization, Nowzad, had obtained for personnel and animals from the prime minister.
In August, Johnson said he had not used his influence to secure an evacuation for Nowzad. After the whistleblower came out in December, he called his statements “complete nonsense”. But the quotes from that email now seem to support the whistleblower’s statements from December. It said the Foreign Office had been given “an order from the Prime Minister” to use “significant resources” to help Nowzad’s animals leave the country.
“It remains the case that the prime minister did not order officials to take any particular action,” a spokesman for the prime minister said in response.
Labor wants Johnson to explain this to parliament. “Once again, the Prime Minister has been caught lying about what he does and decides,” said John Healey, who succeeds Defense for the Social Democratic party. “He should never have given priority to evacuating animals while Afghans who worked for our defence were left behind.”