Watch Boris Johnson and Keir Starmer clash when the prime minister makes ‘absurd’ IRA jibe
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The incident occurred during the first prime minister’s questions since MPs returned after a summer recess.
Mr. Starmer was asking the prime minister a question on when he first knew about the disastrous algorithm used to predict examination results for pupils in England last month.
Prime Minister Johnson replied by implying Mr. Starmer was somewhat soft when it comes to the IRA.
“This is a leader of the opposition who supported an IRA-condoning politician who wanted to get out of Nato,” said the Prime Minister referring to former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn who stood down earlier this year.
Mr. Starmer reacted angrily and demanded the prime minister withdraw the comment.
“Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister made a comment about the IRA and I want him to take it back,” demanded Mr. Starmer.
“I worked in Northern Ireland for five years with the PSNI bringing peace.
“As director of public prosecutions, I prosecuted for five years serious terrorists for five years working with the intelligence services and security forces.”
The Prime Minister was then invited by the speaker of the house, Lindsay Hoyle, to address Mr. Starmer’s question.
“I listened to the protestations of the right honourable gentleman, I think they would have been more in order throughout the years he supported a leader of the Labour party who condoned the IRA.”
An angry Mr. Starmer took the podium and said: “When the prime minister has worked with the security and intelligence forces to prosecute terrorists and criminals he can lecture me.”
Reacting to the incident on social media, Guardian columnist, Jonathan Freedland, said: “Strong #PMQs performance from Keir Starmer - denouncing the “wasted summer” of U-turns, showing genuine anger at Boris Johnson’s absurd attempt to portray him as soft on the IRA.”
However, Conservative Home founder, Tim Montgomerie said: I wonder if Keir Starmer knew about Corbyn’s IRA sympathies when he served in his shadow cabinet?
“Everyone else in the country did #pmqs.”