British Prime Minister hopeful Rory Stewart has admitted to smoking opium in Iran when he visited the country 15 years ago.
Stewart hopes to replace PM Theresa May as leader of the Conservative Party. In a stunning admission, Stewart says he smoked the drug, knowing it was against the law, while visiting Iran to assess “the damage” opium has on communities.
Sky News reports: “I thought ‘this is going be a very strange afternoon to walk’,” he recalled.
“But it may be that the family was so poor they put very little opium in the pipe.”
Having served as a governor in Iraq during the war there, Mr Stewart apologised for smoking the drug.
“I actually went on in Iran to see the damage that opium is doing to communities,” he told Sky News.
“I’ve seen it as a prisons minister. It’s something that was very wrong.
“I made a stupid mistake – I was at a wedding in a large community meeting and somebody passed round this pipe and I smoked it.
“I shouldn’t have done it, it was wrong.”
Mr Stewart is an underdog in the Tory leadership race, having only won the public support of two Tory MPs so far.
Prime Minister Theresa May will stand down as leader of her party on 7 June, paving the way for an official contest between a growing field of candidates.