Burns fired

Tory minister sacked over ‘behaviour’ claims

Sacked: Conor Burns

Tory trade minister Conor Burns has been sacked by Liz Truss and suspended by the party amid allegations about his behaviour during the annual conference in Birmingham.

Mr Burns, 50, who was appointed on 7 September, was removed by the Tory leader and Prime Minister this afternoon and lost the Conservative whip while an investigation takes place.

A No 10 spokeswoman said: “Following a complaint of serious misconduct, the Prime Minister has asked Conor Burns MP to leave the government with immediate effect.

“The Prime Minister took direct action on being informed of this allegation and is clear that all ministers should maintain the high standards of behaviour – as the public rightly expects.”

The former Northern Ireland minister is a longstanding ally of ex-prime minister Boris Johnson. 

According to The Sun, Mr Burns has agreed to “fully cooperate with the investigation and looks forward to clearing his name.”

He later accused the Tory party of ‘rushing to judgement’. 

He said: “Earlier I received a call from the Chief Whip Wendy Morton. Ms Morton informed me that a complaint had been received about me and she had passed it to Conservative Campaign Headquarters to investigate. I was not given any information about the complaint nor was I asked to provide any information.

“On the basis of this complaint Ms Morton told me that the Whip was being withdrawn and that I was standing down as Trade Minister. I will fully cooperate with the Party’s enquiry and look forward to clearing my name.

“I hope the party will be as quick to conduct their enquiry as they were to rush to judgement.’

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