A press enquiry from Scrapbook to the mayor’s office looks to have landed Boris Johnson with a large bar tab.
Wondering whether Londoners were picking paying for his posturing as a ‘statesman’, ahem sorry, entirely necessary trip to Kurdish northern Iraq last January, this blog solicited the following response from Bozza’s spinners:
“My colleague passed on your question re costs of the Kurdistan trip … Regarding specific costs of the trip: A spokesperson for the Mayor of London said:
“There was no cost to the Greater London Authority. Travel expenses were paid for by Kurdistan Regional Government and hotel accommodation was provided by the British Consulate.”
Yes. There was no cost to the Greater London Authority — apart from that bar tab they hadn’t worked out what to do with. In the end Boris ended up paying.
These internal exchanges were released as part of an FOI’d cache of emails associated with the trip.
According to the Guardian, exasperated diplomatic officials also had to request permission from London to rebuff headline-seeking Boris’ requests to visit the ‘front line’.