Labour MP Sparks Outrage After Suggesting Boris Johnson Should Go to Kabul After Taliban Takeover
08:49 GMT 17.08.2021 (Updated: 21:38 GMT 18.10.2022)
© AFP 2022 / HOA video grab from footage broadcast by the UK Parliament's Parliamentary Recording Unit (PRU) shows Britain's Labour Party MP Barry Sheerman gestures as he speaks as the Attorney General Geoffrey Cox responds to an urgent question in the House of Commonsin central London on September 25, 2019 on the prorogation of parliament and the Supreme Court's judgement after parliament resumed
Responding to the criticism of his tweet, Huddersfield MP Barry Sheerman, told the Daily Express his message pointed to a "catastrophic failure of leadership" by Boris Johnson regarding Afghanistan.
Huddersfield MP Barry Sheerman took to Twitter to mock Boris Johnson, saying the UK prime minister should put on a hi-vis jacket and head to Kabul to check out the situation in the Afghan capital. The latter was captured by the Taliban* on 15 August.
Shortly after the tweet was posted, however, Labour MP Sheerman received massive backlash over what he thought was a joke and removed the message within five minutes.
"Perhaps the prime minister should put on that hi-vis jacket he loves so much and pop over to Kabul to check out what's really going on", the now-deleted tweet read.
When asked to respond to the criticism of his tweet, Sheerman told the Daily Express that his tweets pointed to a "catastrophic failure of leadership" by the UK PM on Afghanistan.
"The silence of his government has been deafening as the Taliban have swept through Afghanistan", he told the Daily Express.
Several Tory MPs threw their weight behind Johnson and criticised Sheerman over what they believed was an "inane comment". North West Leicestershire MP Andrew Bridgen was particularly tough on Sheerman, saying the latter literally suggested that Johnson "make himself a victim of the Taliban*". Another Conservative Party MP, Richard Holden, described such behaviour as "typical of the attitude of bargain basement Barry who, like many Labour MPs, is happy to snipe from the sidelines but have nothing constructive to offer".
16 August 2021, 06:11 GMT
Sheerman, however, puts his foot down, saying he believes there has indeed been a "sense of a leadership vacuum" in the UK.
"Parliament is now being recalled and the prime minister must update MPs on its plans moving forward to protect our national security and avoid a humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan", he was quoted by the Daily Express as saying.
In July, Boris Johnson came under fire over plans to force offenders to work in "fluorescent-jacketed chain gangs". The UK prime minister's idea was to put more people doing community service into hi-vis jackets as they cleared rubbish and graffiti, insisting that he wanted a more visible way of showing offenders working in the streets.
*The Taliban is a terrorist organization banned in Russia and many other nations.