UK Foreign Minister makes “Dead Bodies” joke, angers Libyans

Johnson comments were denounced by a wave of criticism on social media in Libya

UK Foreign Minister Boris Johnson has been bitterly criticised over his Libya “dead bodies” gaffe at a conference on Tuesday.

Johnson said that Sirte might as well become the new Dubai if only the dead bodies are cleared away, laughing at the end of his joke.

“British businesses wanted to invest in the city of Sirte. They have got a brilliant vision to turn Sirte into the next Dubai,” he told Conservatives attending the party’s annual conference in Manchester, talking up its “bone-white sands, beautiful sea” and “brilliant young people”.

However, his sarcasm fell short not only to the Libyan people but also to the British.

Johnson comments were denounced by a wave of criticism on social media in Libya. They were also criticized by the UK lawmakers.

Johnson’s comments were slammed by shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry.

“For Boris Johnson to treat those deaths as a joke — a mere inconvenience before UK business people can turn the city into a beach resort — is unbelievably crass, callous and cruel,” said Thornberry, a Labour MP.

“There comes a time when the buffoonery needs to stop, because if Boris Johnson thinks the bodies of those brave government soldiers and innocent civilians killed in Sirte are a suitable subject for throwaway humour, he does not belong in the office of foreign secretary,” she added.

Johnson visited Libya last August and met with officials from east and west of the country.

The views expressed in Op-Ed pieces are those of the author and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of Libyan Express.
How to submit an Op-Ed: Libyan Express accepts opinion articles on a wide range of topics. Submissions may be sent to oped@libyanexpress.com. Please include ‘Op-Ed’ in the subject line.
Azara Media Azara Media
You might also like

Submit a Correction

For: UK Foreign Minister makes “Dead Bodies” joke, angers Libyans

Your suggestion have been successfully submitted

There was an error while trying to send your request. Please try again.

Libyan Express will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing.