Boris Johnson has been branded “crass and clueless” after comparing the French President to a World War II Nazi.
Britain’s Foreign Secretary bumbled into a Brexit row when he accused President Francois Hollande of preparing to deliver “punishment” beatings “in the manner of some World War II movie”.
The comments that were immediately seized on as a reference to Nazi Germany.
Hollande said last year that there “must be a price” for Britain for leaving the EU.
And an adviser repeated yesterday that he believed the UK could not have as good a deal outside the single market as inside it.
Speaking in India, Johnson said: “If Monsieur Hollande wants to administer punishment beatings to anybody who chooses to escape, rather in the manner of some sort of World War II movie, I don’t think that is the way forward.
“And I think actually it’s not in the interests of our friends and our partners.
“It seems absolutely incredible to me that in the 21st century, member states of the
EU should be seriously contemplating the reintroduction of tariffs or whatever to administer punishment to the UK.”
Johnson did not use the word “Nazi” but his comments were condemned by all sides as offensive.