Boris Johnson has been challenged again over parties at Downing Street after a new photograph emerged showing him standing next to an open bottle of alcohol.
The Daily Mirror on Wednesday published an image of Johnson flanked by three staff at Number 10, with the bottle on a table alongside snacks.
It is the latest revelation regarding lockdown-breaking gatherings held at the residence of the Prime Minister during the pandemic.
An investigation by the Metropolitan Police into 12 gatherings that were held across Downing Street and Whitehall is already underway.
Last month, senior civil servant Sue Gray – tasked with investigating the allegations – found there had been “failures of leadership and judgment” at No 10 and the Cabinet Office.
There have been calls for Gray’s findings to be published in full, with details having been excluded from the published document due to the Met investigation.
During Prime Minister’s Questions, the photograph of Johnson was raised by Labour MP Fabian Hamilton.
“At the height of the lockdown restrictions in 2020, my constituent who has worked for the NHS for over 30 years, was diagnosed with a tumour on her spine,” he told MPs.
“Whilst in hospital undergoing painful surgery, her family obeyed the rules and didn’t visit her.
“In the last few minutes, a photo has emerged of the Prime Minister in Downing Street on December 15, 2020, surrounded by alcohol, food and people wearing tinsel.
“It looks a lot like one of the Christmas parties he told us never happened.
“So for the sake of my constituent and the sacrifices she made, will the Prime Minister be referring this party to the police? As it’s not one of the ones already being investigated.”
Johnson refused to be drawn on the issue, opting not to comment on the photograph published by the Mirror.
He responded: “First of all, I’m very sorry about his constituent and for the difficulties that she’s been through and I understand very much her feelings.
“But in what he has just said, I am afraid he is completely in error.”
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