World reacts to Boris Johnson as foreign secretary
‘Justice: Johnson now has to lie in the bed he made,’ says editor of German tabloid Bild
The world of politics, diplomacy and celebrity has reacted with a mixture of amusement and horror to the news that Boris Johnson has been appointed Britain’s new foreign secretary.
Johnson himself said he was “excited” to take up the new role on Wednesday, which will involve travelling the globe and meeting foreign leaders as the UK’s most senior diplomat.
However, his track record when it comes to interacting with other cultures is patchy to say the least, and politicians around the world have been slightly less than excited by the prospect of working with a man who once wrote a poem about the Turkish president having sex with a goat.
In America, the reaction was one of carefully restrained laughter.
When state department spokesman Mark Toner heard the news, he struggled to keep a straight face - a broad smile breaking out more than once - before saying the US “looked forward” to working with Johnson.
Toner was not alone in his bemusement. American political scientist Ian Bremmer hoped it might all be an elaborate joke.
“I believe it is our task to work closely with governments in allied countries. The world has enough problems for us to progress in our foreign policy cooperation with Great Britain as we have always done,” she said.
Es gibt doch noch Gerechtigkeit: Als Außenminister muss Boris #Johnson die Suppe (mit) auslöffeln, die er seinem Land eingebrockt hat...— Nikolaus Blome (@NikolausBlome) July 13, 2016
Maybe the Brits are just having us on. We probably deserve it. https://t.co/FfidoxWCZu— ian bremmer (@ianbremmer) July 13, 2016
@NickJWReilly Think He’s— Cher (@cher) July 13, 2016
F-ing Idiot who lied to British ppl
& Didnt have the⚽️🏉🎱2 LEAD
THEM ONCE “LEAVE”VOTE WON‼️..anymore questions😂
The hashtag #Außenminister (foreign minister) however captured the national mood.
Johnson had not come across as an exemplary diplomat in the past, Stegner said. “Now he is negotiating Brexit. Enjoy the trip!”
Simone Peter, co-leader of the Green Party, likened Johnson’s appointment to “trusting the cat to keep the cream”.
Green Party parliamentary co-leader Anton Hofreiter said appointing Johnson was “a very bad sign for the leaving process and raises doubts over the competency of the new prime minister”.
Nikolaus Blome, the deputy editor of Germany’s biggest tabloid Bild, tweeted: “There’s justice after all. As foreign minister, Boris Johnson now has to lie in the bed he made himself”
Sweden’s former prime minister was among those despairing over the decision.
And Cher was, well, not happy.
New Zealand crime writer Val McDermid was similarly unimpressed.
Some, however, believe Johnson is the right man for the job.
Among his fans is the former Australian prime minister, Tony Abbott -
who once threatened to “shirtfront” Vladimir Putin.