British government denies Johnson made secret trip to Italy

Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson

The British government on Monday rejected an Italian media report that said Prime Minister Boris Johnson made a secret trip to the city of Perugia.

Italian newspaper La Repubblica said Johnson visited Perugia over the weekend of September 12-13, citing a statement by a local airport.

Downing Street said the report was “completely untrue,” adding that Johnson “has not travelled to Italy in recent months.”

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told Sky News that he believed the report was “mistaken.” “Not as far as I am aware, but I don’t track his movements by the hour,” Shapps told the broadcaster when asked if Johnson had visited Perugia.

“Just to be clear, that would be in a travel corridor in any case,” he added, referring to Italy’s inclusion on a list of nations from which arrivals to Britain are not required to quarantine.

Speculation over a possible visit by Johnson began after Perugia’s international airport posted a statement on Thursday saying that Uruguayan football star Luis Suarez had arrived in the city from Barcelona to take an Italian exam as part of his application for an Italian passport.

The statement named Johnson as one of “many names and personalities from the political, sporting and economic world” who had arrived in Perugia in recent days.

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