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UK police reviewing a Johnson party decision after photo emerges

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By Reuters
UK police reviewing a Johnson party decision after photo emerges
UK police reviewing a Johnson party decision after photo emerges   -   Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2022

LONDON – British police said on Wednesday they were reviewing a decision not to investigate a gathering held in Boris Johnson’s Downing Street office during COVID lockdowns after a new photograph emerged of the event.

The police were already investigating 12 gatherings held at Johnson’s office and residence after an internal inquiry found his staff had enjoyed alcohol-fuelled parties in Downing Street, with the British leader attending a few of the events himself.

Johnson has apologised for the conduct and vowed to change the culture. While reviewing the allegations, the police rejected four gatherings, including one, which involved an online Christmas quiz on Dec. 15.

However the Mirror tabloid published a new picture on Wednesday of the event, which showed Johnson stood by two members of staff, one who is wearing tinsel around his neck, next to an open bottle of champagne.

London’s Metropolitan Police said they had previously assessed the event and decided that it did not meet the threshold for criminal investigation. “That assessment is now being reviewed,” a spokesperson said.

The revelations around Johnson have raised questions about his judgement and forced some members of his own party to call for him to resign. The police investigation is ongoing and the full internal report by senior official Sue Gray will be published once the police have completed their inquiry.