British Prime Minster Boris Johnson was criticised by a number of women’s rights groups after a video was released in which he claimed he did not know of the allegations against him.
The video showed Johnson making a statement at a press conference that was broadcast by BBC News on Monday night.
Johnson said he had not heard about the allegations but that they were coming from the women in his Cabinet, who said he “didn’t know what they were”.
Johnson then said that “somebody is trying to get at me” and that he would “have to look at that and be able to respond”.
The video of Johnson’s press conference went viral, with women’s groups condemning the comments as hypocritical.
Johnson’s spokesman, Alex Hopkins, told the Independent that Johnson was “clear that he did know” of the sexual harassment allegations against the Prime Minister.
“In a statement to the BBC, Mr Johnson said that he had been aware of the reports that he said had been made and that they had been reported to him,” he said.
“Mr Johnson has apologised to any women who have been the subject of those reports.”
Mr Hopkins added that Johnson “welcomes all women and girls in the workplace, and does not have any tolerance for sexual harassment”.
Johnson has not commented on the allegations.
A statement from Johnson’s office read: “Boris has been clear that he has not been aware or heard about any of the issues raised by those women.
He is committed to holding those in his government to account, and has asked the BBC to respect his privacy in order to conduct an independent review.”
This is a matter for him, as he has already asked the relevant organisations to do so.