Boris Johnson praised ‘intimate’ EU-UK ties days before switching to Brexit camp – report
Details of an unpublished article allegedly written by Boris Jonson for The Daily Telegraph were revealed by The Sunday Times. The publication revealed that in the piece – that never made it to print – the former Mayor of London reasoned that the UK should be “intimately engaged” with Brussels.
“Britain is a great nation, a global force for good. It is surely a boon for the world and for Europe that she should be intimately engaged in the EU,” Johnson wrote, warning that Brexit could trigger an economic shock.
Johnson, who campaigned for Brits to leave the European Union ahead of a June referendum, wondered: “Why are we so determined to turn our back on it?”
“This is a market on our doorstep, ready for further exploitation by British firms,” Johnson wrote. “The membership fee seems rather small for all that access.”
In the unpublished piece, Johnson, who became foreign affairs minister in the new government after the referendum, also warned that the UK’s exit vote from the EU could lead to Scotland declaring independence, rendering the kingdom not so “united”.
Quite predictably, Johnson did not leave Russia out, warning his readers that Brexit could result in aggression from Moscow.
The article was allegedly written in February, just two days before in a sudden change of heart Johnson announced his support of the Brexit campaign. A source, allegedly a witness to the events, confirmed the authenticity of the unpublished article to Reuters revealing that at the time, Johnson wanted to test all the arguments put forward by the remain camp.
Having written it, Johnson allegedly decided that the arguments in favor of staying in the bloc did not “stack up,” the source revealed. The so-called remain article was allegedly written alongside the so-called leave EU article.
According to The Daily Mail, Johnson earned £275,000 ($335,000) p.a. writing his column for The Telegraph before quitting in July to assume public office.