UK Politics

Boris Johnson: Hongi greeting could be mistaken in Glasgow pub

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Media captionThe foreign secretary joked about the traditional 'hongi' greeting in New Zealand

A traditional Maori greeting could be mistaken "in a pub in Glasgow", Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has joked.

On a visit to New Zealand, Mr Johnson thanked locals for teaching him the hongi greeting, in which people touch their noses together.

He said it was a "beautiful form of introduction - though it might be misinterpreted in a pub in Glasgow if you were to try it".

He is on a nine-day international tour which also takes in Australia.

During his New Zealand trip, the foreign secretary visited the town of Kaikoura, northeast of Christchurch, the scene of a powerful earthquake last year. He thanked locals for looking after British tourists in its aftermath.

With the UK government keen to sow the seeds of international trade deals after Brexit, Mr Johnson is due to visit Australia for talks with his counterpart Julie Bishop.

Responding to the Glasgow reference in Mr Johnson's joke, the SNP said he had "made a career out of travelling the globe with his foot firmly in his mouth".

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