Boris Johnson has come under fire from his own party for publicly shaming China’s use of traditional medicine and blaming the ‘demented’ practice of harvesting pangolin scales for causing coronavirus.
Conservative insiders detected the Prime Minister’s fiancée Carrie Symonds’ influence in his incendiary remarks, which has sparked a furious row with Beijing.
In an environmental speech to world leaders yesterday Mr Johnson tore into people who ‘grind up the scales of a pangolin’ in a bid to become more ‘potent’ — a thinly veiled attack on Chinese remedies.
Ms Symonds has been vocal in her opposition to wet markets, where the animals are sold, gaining praise from Peta as it announced her as one of its most influential activists of 2020
Former Tory aides told MailOnline she was ‘definitely’ behind Mr Johnson’s conservation push and are growing concerned that her enthusiasm for 웹소설 공모전 such issues are eating up too much of the Government’s bandwidth at the expense of other policy areas.
One Tory insider said: ‘When the f*** was he talking about the environment before he got with her?
I’ve never seen Boris talk about the environment.
‘It’s also a tangential issue. It is completely lacking any political antennae. it is not mission critical. This government should be about the public’s agenda, not Carrie’s agenda.’
The Tory said there was a ‘time and a place’ to talk about conservation issues, 웹소설 공모전 and this was ‘not it’.
Mr Johnson made the remarks in a virtual speech to the One Planet Summit, hosted by France’s President Macron, citing the illegal trade in the scaly anteater-like creatures.
They are widely used in Chinese medicine and 웹소설 공모전 their trafficking has been blamed for transmitting the virus from bats found in the wild to humans.
The first documented cases of the Covid-19 were in the Chinese city of Wuhan, with a wet market trading in exotic animals being seen as the probable source.
Mr Johnson’s attack on China was followed today by a broadside by Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab over the treatment of the Uighur minority.
On another day of chaos for Britons battling the worst crisis for a generation:
- Bank of England governor 웹소설 공모전 Andrew Bailey warned furlough is masking unemployment and the true rate could be 6.5 per cent not 4.9 per cent;
- The government is facing more pressure to make the vaccination programme 24-hours and start giving more frontline workers jabs;
- Matt Hancock has denied there is a national oxygen shortage as the strain on the NHS increases but admitted patients might have to be moved to where there are supplies;
- One in every three deaths in England and Wales was linked to coronavirus in the final days of 2020, official figures revealed today as a separate analysis claimed the virus was behind the sharpest rise in fatalities since 1940;
- Downing Street has admitted pictures of the random contents in some free school meal food parcels are ‘completely unacceptable’ after the issue was highlighted by Marcus Rashford;
- Seven vaccination hubs have come into use, including London’s ExCeL and Birmingham’s Millennium Point;
- Derbyshire Police has cancelled £200 fines for two women penalised for driving five miles to go for a walk;
- Nearly a quarter of care home residents have received their first shot of Covid vaccine, with nearly 2.7million doses now administered across the UK;
- Hospitals started rationing oxygen as it emerged that one in four coronavirus patients is under 55.
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