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Full cost of trip which saw Boris Johnson miss Heathrow vote revealed



Boris Johnson’s trip to Afghanistan – which meant he missed the vote on expanding Heathrow – cost more than £26,000.

The two-day visit in June cost a total of £26,848 – £7,482 for the former foreign secretary and £19,366 for three officials, figures released by the Foreign Office show.

The cost for the officials was revealed in August, but until now the total for Mr Johnson had not been disclosed.

Mr Johnson was in Afghanistan at the same time as MPs gave their verdict on plans to expand the west London airport.

Critics viewed such timing as more than a mere lucky coincidence, given Mr Johnson has been a long-standing opponent of building a third runway at Heathrow.

He once pledged he would lie down in front of the bulldozers in a bid to stop expansion.

At the time of the vote, the expectation was that Mr Johnson would have been required to resign if he wanted to vote against a third runway.

This is because Cabinet ministers are bound by “collective responsibility” to support government policy.

In the end, he was out of the country when the vote took place, with MPs approving expansion by 415 to 119, a majority of 296.

Having told his constituents that resigning over Heathrow would “achieve nothing”, Mr Johnson did just that a few weeks later, this time over Brexit.

He quit over Prime Minister Theresa May’s Chequers plan, saying it would reduce Britain to the status of an EU “colony”.

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