Boris Johnson branded a "clown" by French President in latest war of words

PINT sized French President Emmanuel Macron sparked a fresh diplomatic row after branding Boris Johnson a “clown” on the day 27 migrants drowned in the Channel.

In a private rant on the day of the tragic drownings Mr Macron also called the PM and his government a “circus.”

His leaked remarks, published in French magazine Le Canard yesterday, also said Britain was “playing the victim” after Brexit.

He added: “It is very sad to see a great country, with whom we could collaborate a lot, led by a clown. It's always the same circus.”

And Mr Macron risked another row with No 10 by pressuring Brussels not to "cave in" over Northern Ireland red tape.

He suggested the PM's plan to bin checks poses an "existential" threat to the EU and would mean "there are no longer any rules at our borders".

Yesterday the PM's spokesman said he had not seen the magazine report, but he added: “The important thing the public on both sides of the Channel want us to do is focus on how we avoid further loss of life.”

It comes as a Labour MP claimed minority groups in Britain think the PM is “coming for them” thanks to new powers in the new Borders Bill at PMQs.

Imran Hussain claimed the Bill – which will help stop small boats – could see individuals stripped of their British citizenship even for the "most minor wrongdoings".

Boris slammed the untrue claims telling him to "withdraw what he just said" and told him to "look at the Conservative frontbench today", gesturing towards where his Cabinet colleagues Rishi Sunak, Sajid Javid, Priti Patel, Nadhim Zahawi and Alok Sharma were sat.

He added: "He should withdraw it, what he said is absolutely shameful and, as he knows full well, the Borders Bill does nothing of the kind."

The PM said the Bill would give powers to turn people back at sea and allow them to be screened abroad while also committing to “review” the Human Rights Act.

And he said the new Online Harms Bill would also target smugglers posting ads on social media platforms like Facebook.

It came as the immigration minister Tom Pursglove said he feels a "huge weight of responsibility" in the wake of the tragedy in the Channel.

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