Boris Johnson: Jeremy Corbyn is the Kremlin's useful idiot
Jeremy Corbyn is a “useful idiot” for the Russian government by refusing to blame Vladimir Putin for the Salisbury nerve agent attack, Boris Johnson has declared.
The Foreign Secretary lashed out at the Labour leader for endorsing the “torrent of absurdity” coming from Moscow as it seeks to rebut claims it was responsible for the near-fatal incident.
But Labour pointed out that Mr Corbyn had said Russia did seem responsible for the attack and mocked Mr Johnson after he was caught in a PR storm over the incident earlier this week.
The row comes as ex-double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia continue to recover in hospital.
The pair will be offered new identities in the US with help from the CIA to protect them against further murder attempts in the future, according to the Sunday Times.
The Government has pointed the finger directly at the Kremlin for the attack last month but Mr Corbyn has been reluctant to accuse Russia outright until more hard proof emerges.
Mr Johnson accused Moscow of peddling “an avalanche of lies” about the attack - after it mocked the accusations against it and shared conspiracy theories of how the poisoning could have happened.
In an article for the same paper he wrote: “There is only one thing that gives the Kremlin succour and lends false credibility to its propaganda onslaught.
“That is when politicians from the targeted countries join in. Sadly, I am driven to the conclusion that Jeremy Corbyn has joined this effort.”
He said Mr Corbyn came from an “infantile leftist background” which led him to sympathise with “any country, any movement, however unappealing, that is hostile to Britain”.
And he added: “Corbyn shames himself by lending it succour. Truly he is the Kremlin’s useful idiot.”
But Labour rebuked Mr Johnson after his claim that Porton Down had told him the Novichok nerve agent came from Russia was contradicted by the boss of the defence lab.
A Labour spokesperson said: “Jeremy Corbyn has repeatedly said the evidence points to Russia being responsible, directly or indirectly, and that the Russian authorities must be held to account on the basis of evidence.
“Boris Johnson has made a fool of himself. These ridiculous insults won’t distract attention from the fact that he has clearly misled the public over vital issues of national security.”
Yesterday Mr Johnson blasted an offer to meet the Russian ambassador to the UK as a “diversionary tactic”.