Rory Stewart apologises for smoking opium

Rory Stewart

The Tory leadership hopeful said smoking the drug was a "stupid mistake"

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Conservative leadership hopeful Rory Stewart has apologised after it emerged he once smoked opium at a wedding.

Mr Stewart said smoking the class-A drug in Iran more than a decade ago was a "stupid mistake".

"I was at a wedding in a large community meeting and somebody passed this pipe around the room and I smoked it - I shouldn't have done, I was wrong," he told Sky News.

"I think it was a very stupid mistake and I did it 15 years ago, and I actually went on in Iran to see the damage that opium was doing to communities."

He continued: "I've seen it as a prisons minister. It was something that was very wrong, I made a stupid mistake."

The politician, who has been active on social media since declaring his leadership bid, referenced the incident again in a Twitter exchange with football pundit, Gary Lineker.

The sports broadcaster called him "sensible and straight-talking", joking "there must be something in that opium".

Replying to the tweet, Mr Stewart wrote: "Thank you @GaryLineker - that has got to be my best endorsement so far. Apart from the opium. That is."

News of the leadership hopefuls opium escapade was received well online, with many speculating about how the events unfolded.

Author Emma Kennedy said: "The bit I’m more interested in is the bit where the bride and groom sat discussing how much opium they were going to need."

And writer Sathnam Sanghera added: "Smoking opium out of sheer politeness towards your guests is peak Britishness."

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