Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has said it is “disappointing” that Jeremy Corbyn will not attend a dinner to mark the centenary of the Balfour Declaration.

He claimed the Labour leader was, by his absence, appearing to “side with one party and not the other”.

Johnson’s remarks came after he delivered a statement on the 1917 Balfour Declaration – a letter which outlined the British government’s support for the establishment of a “national home for the Jewish people” in what was known as Palestine.

He was asked by Conservative MP Colin Clark (Gordon): “Does ( Johnson) agree it is deeply disappointing that the Leader of the Opposition will not attend a dinner to mark Balfour?”

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Johnson replied: “I believe it is disappointing because, (as) I think the vast majority of members on both sides of the House have said this afternoon, this is an occasion which is of huge importance for the world – in which our country played an enormous part, in which we still have a large part to play.

“And you would have thought that the Leader of the Opposition would at least be interested in trying to achieve a solution to this problem that has bedevilled the world for so long and would not by his absence so blatantly be appearing to side with one party and not the other.

“I must say I do find it unfortunate.”