Boris Johnson urges Obama not to intervene in EU debate

Published: 09:56 GMT, Mar 15, 2016 |

Boris Johnson has said it would be “outrageous hypocrisy” for US President Barack Obama to intervene directly in the EU referendum debate.

Mr Obama, who wants the UK to stay in the EU, is expected to visit the UK for the last time as President next month.

The London mayor wrote that it would be “wholly fallacious” of Mr Obama to use any trip to warn that the UK will lose global influence if it quits the EU.

Downing Street said Mr Obama and other leaders were “worth listening to”.

And a White House spokesman said it would continue to argue it “deeply values a strong ally in the United Kingdom as part of the European Union”.

There have been unconfirmed reports Mr Obama will visit the UK in April in what would likely be his last visit before his term in office ends in January.

In his regular column for the Daily Telegraph, Mr Johnson – who is campaigning to leave the EU ahead of the vote on 23 June – said it would be wrong of the US president to use the visit to argue for the UK’s continued EU membership.

He wrote that President Obama would arrive to the UK “sometime in the next couple of months” and “pronounce on the matter”.

“The British people will be told to be good to themselves, to do the right thing,” he wrote.