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HomeNewsPOLL: Was Boris right to say Britain ‘wanted to be free’?

POLL: Was Boris right to say Britain ‘wanted to be free’?

In a speech at the Conservative Party’s spring conference, in Blackpool, the UK Prime Minister said that Britons and Ukrainians had the instinct “to choose freedom”, citing the Brexit referendum as a “recent example”.

Mr Johnson said: “I know that it’s the instinct of the people of this country, like the people of Ukraine, to choose freedom, every time. I can give you a couple of famous recent examples.

“When the British people voted for Brexit in such large, large numbers, I don’t believe it was because they were remotely hostile to foreigners.

“It’s because they wanted to be free to do things differently and for this country to be able to run itself.”

His comments have been criticised by political leaders across Europe.

Former President of the European Council Donal Tusk said the comments “offend Ukrainians, the British and common sense”.

And Guy Verhofstadt, former Belgian prime minister, described the comments as “insane”.

He said: “Brexit was about undoing freedoms and leaving the EU…Ukrainians want more freedom and to join the EU.”

Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey said the remark was an “insult” to Ukrainians.

Conservative peer Lord Barwell said voting in a referendum was not “in any way comparable with risking your life” in a war.

He wrote on Twitter: “Apart from the bit where voting in a free and fair referendum isn’t in any way comparable with risking your life to defend your country against invasion + the awkward fact the Ukrainians are fighting for the freedom to join the EU, this comparison is bang on.”

What do YOU think? Was Boris right to say Britain ‘wanted to be free’? Vote in our poll and leave your thoughts in the comment section below.



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