Boris Johnson, the Tory leader and the next prime minister hopeful accused the French of being “turds” over Brexit.
According to the Daily Mail, this was said in a fly-on-the-wall BBC documentary. However, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office asked for this to removed over concerns this could affect diplomatic relations.
A Whitehall memo said Johnson’s ‘turd’ comment would make the Anglo-French relations “awkward.”
Johnson’s comment was reportedly made during last year’s filming of a three-part documentary, Inside the Foreign Office, senior diplomats privately voiced their concerns that it could make a Brexit deal harder for the UK.
A spokeswoman for the BBC said, “The programme set out to reflect the realities of life inside the Foreign Office.
“The production team made judgments about what was in the programme and they are satisfied that the programme achieves its ambitions and has the content they wanted.”
Foreign Office minister, Sir Alan Duncan said there had been a significant level of concern over the documentary.
Sir Alan told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme, “I do remember that the filming of the documentary was a pretty high-octane venture.
“There were some pretty bumpy moments when we thought ‘Ooh, we don’t want that to appear’.
“I imagine that there were discussions between the Foreign Office and the Beeb saying, ‘Please don’t put that it in … or that, or that, or that, or that’. This was perhaps one of them.”
German media hit out at Johnson this week calling him a “charlatan” a “clown” and Bild said, “When EU Council President Donald Tusk said there was a ‘special place in hell’ for the Brexit leaders, he also had Johnson in mind.”