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Boris Johnson is best-placed to become the next 'leader of the free world' after Britain finally unshackles itself from the paralysing three-year Brexit saga, the former foreign minister of Canada has told MailOnline.
John Baird, who steered Canada's foreign policy from 2011 to 2015, believes the Prime Minister can spearhead the Western push-back against Iran in light of an isolationist Donald Trump, a politically weakened Angela Merkel and an Emmanuel Macron distracted with domestic woes.
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He said: 'I think that never before has the world needed leadership from the UK and I think never before has the UK been in a better place to provide that leadership.'
He added: 'This is a moment for Boris Johnson to lead the free world. Angela Merkel became leader of the free world ten years ago. I think Boris has the capacity to provide the Western leadership the world needs.
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'The US is becoming more inward-looking, it's time for Britannia to rule the world.'
In a wide-ranging exclusive interview with MailOnline on a recent tour of the UK, Mr Baird said:
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Casting an eye over an increasingly turbulent geopolitical landscape, Mr Baird concludes Mr Johnson, who has a 'solid five-year mandate' and hefty majority, should be the one to chart a way forward for Western allies.
Mapping out a blueprint of how the PM and allies can confront Iran, he said: 'We need to confront them on the Vienna Convention, we need to confront them on their nuclear programme, we need to confront them on their terrible and abysmal human rights record and probably most imminently is their material support for terrorism every single place in the region and in other spots in the world.'
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He also said that overcoming the Brexit hurdle - the UK is set to leave the EU on January 31 - will allow the...
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