HL Deb 04 March 2002 vol 632 c2WA
Lord Greaves

asked Her Majesty's Government:

In relation to the comments by the Foreign Secretary on Radio 5 Live on 24 February that, "We say Burnley fans eat bananas with their feet but I would not say that at all. That would be offensive to great apes", whether they consider such comments encourage good behaviour by football supporters or whether they may be construed as an incitement to bad behaviour by fans, even if they were macle as part of a "light-hearted conversation", as stated by Mr Straw; and whether they are appropriate comments from a government Minister. [HL3082]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean

As is obvious from the context, the Foreign Secretary's remarks were made in jest in the course of an interview where throughout he made clear that he was appearing and commenting only as a supporter of Blackburn Rovers Football Club and not in any capacity as a Minister of the Crown.

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