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Is David Cameron back in the driving seat? Tories are ‘accidentally referring to Foreign Secretary as the PM’ as others accuse Rishi Sunak of handing the unelected Lord control while he focuses on ‘spreadsheets’

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Tories highlighted the growing influence of Lord Cameron today as they suggested Rishi Sunak has handed him a swathe of key duties.

The extent to which the PM has delegated duties of state to the Foreign Secretary has been raising eyebrows among MPs.

As the peer appeared before the powerful 1922 committee last night, one politician inadvertently referred to him as ‘Prime Minister’ – briefly forgetting he quit that role in 2016. 

Lord Cameron described China‘s hacking of the elections watchdog as ‘completely unacceptable’, but he was also challenged over his own previous stance on the Asian power.

The extent to which the PM has delegated the duties of state to Lord Cameron (pictured) has been raising eyebrows among MPs

The extent to which the PM has delegated the duties of state to Lord Cameron (pictured) has been raising eyebrows among MPs

As premier, Lord Cameron hailed a 'golden era' of closer relations with Beijing (pictured with Xi Jinping on his state visit to the UK in 2015)

As premier, Lord Cameron hailed a ‘golden era’ of closer relations with Beijing (pictured with Xi Jinping on his state visit to the UK in 2015)

Lord Cameron made a bombshell return to frontline politics in November, when Rishi Sunak appointed him Foreign Secretary

Lord Cameron made a bombshell return to frontline politics in November, when Rishi Sunak appointed him Foreign Secretary 

As premier, Lord Cameron hailed a ‘golden era’ of closer relations with Beijing, with one security source describing him as the ‘great panda hugger’.

There have been concerns that Lord Cameron has been holding back moves to counter China’s meddling, although he insists the world has changed since his charm offensive on Xi Jinping. 

The peer also faced questions over his position on Gaza, dismissing rumours that the UK could stop supplying arms to Israel if there is military action in Rafah.

He told the meeting he was working with Israel as a ‘close friend’ who did not want to see the country ‘prosecuted for not letting aid in’.

A former Cabinet minister told MailOnline that Lord Cameron had been given huge latitude by Mr Sunak, and it had been noted by his benches.

The peer has been on a frantic diplomatic tour since his shock appointment in November, meeting leaders – many of whom he dealt with as premier – around the world. Meanwhile, Mr Sunak has appeared more focused on domestic policy. 

‘A colleague asked him about it and he said Cameron was a ”tremendous help”,’ the MP said.

‘I think the truth is that he has considerably more international credibility.’ 

Another senior MP swiped that Mr Sunak left everything to Lord Cameron because ‘foreign policy doesn’t fit on a spreadsheet’. 

A strongly pro-Israel backbencher said they had gone into the meeting last night ready to ‘give him some sh**’ over lukewarm support for Israel. But they said he immediately won over the room. 

‘He is a class act,’ the MP said. ‘The contrast with our current leader is quite stark.’ 

The peer has been on a frantic diplomatic tour since his shock appointment in November (pictured with Benjamin Netanyahu that month)

The peer has been on a frantic diplomatic tour since his shock appointment in November (pictured with Benjamin Netanyahu that month)



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