Norwich MP apologises after swearing at colleague during heated exchange

Labour Party PPC for Norwich South Clive Lewis. Photo: Mark Tillie

Labour Party PPC for Norwich South Clive Lewis. Photo: Mark Tillie - Credit: photograph by mark tillie

Norwich MP Clive Lewis has apologised to colleague John Woodcock after he swore at him during a confrontation ahead of today's debate.

The Barrow MP, who supported the extension of air strikes into Syria, lodged a formal complaint to his chief whip after the heated discussion ended with Mr Lewis uttering an expletive.

Mr Woodcock was reportedly angered by the Norwich MP who said 'on their heads be it' to Labour MPs who voted in favour of military action, adding that if there were more terrorist atrocities and the war extended with no end 'then we will obviously be looking at who voted for this, and when the blame is apportioned, step forward'. The exchange took place in the atrium of the modern extension of parliament, known as Portcullis House.

In a statement, Mr Lewis said: 'I think it only fair I set the record straight as to what actually happened in the incident being reported with John Woodcock.

'On leaving a colleague's office in Portcullis House I encountered John who approached me and began to harangue me about comments I had made the previous day.

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'I explained to him that some of my comments had been reported out of context. Unsatisfied with my response, he continued with the confrontation, so shortly afterwards, I walked away feeling this to be a futile exchange.

'As I left I did indeed swear at him which in hindsight I regret.

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'I'm more than happy to apologise to John, I'd like to think he'd be able to do the same back.

'Ultimately this is a distraction from the grave decision Parliament is being asked to make.

'We're all human beings and we're all feeling the pressure of this important decision. We should always be able to disagree with one another, but how we do that is clearly important.'

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