Boris Johnson jokes Maori greeting could be misinterpreted as a headbutt
The Foreign Secretary is on a two-day visit to New Zealand to strengthen ties.
Boris Johnson has likened a traditional Maori greeting to a headbutt while on a two-day trip to New Zealand.
As Britain looks to strengthen its ties with the former colony, the UK Foreign Secretary had a go at a hongi, in which people press their noses together in place of a formal handshake.
And afterwards, Johnson joked the greeting “might be misinterpreted in a pub in Glasgow”.
However, Johnson did also call the hongi a “beautiful form of introduction”.
Johnson has been a busy bee during the visit to the South Pacific nation, which comes amid a broader reshaping of the UK’s global relationships as it prepares to leave the European Union.
On Monday, he unveiled a war memorial at Pukeahu Park in Wellington.
And he also surveyed earthquake damage in Kaikoura.
Pleasure to show Boris Johnson around Kaikoura this morning. He thanked the community for looking after British tourists after the quake. pic.twitter.com/KWthaApDOg— Nathan Guy (@NathanGuyOtaki) July 23, 2017
The town was struck by a magnitude-7.8 earthquake in November and two people were killed.
Johnson thanked townsfolk for looking after tourists following the quake – and also for teaching him the hongi.