Carrie Johnson appears next to migrant row dictator Lukashenko on ‘disrupters’ list

Carrie Johnson speaks at 2021 Conservative Party conference

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In POLITICO’s annual ranking of the most influential people in Europe, “The Class of 2022”, Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s wife, Carrie Johnson was placed side-by-side with Alexander Lukashenko. Ms Johnson was ranked eighth in the “disrupter” category, while Mr Lukashenko was ranked just one place below, at ninth.

Writing about her influence, the news outlet praised Ms Johnson, for “pioneering a path as a new kind of political spouse in British politics”.

It wrote: “Carrie Johnson is pioneering a path as a new kind of political spouse in British politics — one who is not afraid to join the fray.

“Even before she married British Prime Minister Boris Johnson in May, she was already the subject of a whisper campaign accusing her of having outsized influence for someone not elected to office.

“A frequent target of the prime minister’s rogue former adviser Dominic Cummings, Johnson has been subject to swirling speculation that she’s had a big say in everything from badger culls to the prime ministerial residence’s expensive face-lift and staffing at the heart of the British government.”

Also featured in the category are eight other “influential” figures, including far-right leader Viktor Orban and former Polish prime minister and European Council president, Donald Tusk.

Belarusian dictator Lukashenko, who Ms Johnson was ranked next to, has been accused of using refugees as a pawn in his attack on the EU, after he reportedly sent thousands of refugees to the Polish border.

The issue is highlighted by the organisation In the rankings, which says that “Europe can’t ignore Alexander Lukashenko”.

It adds: “He’s making sure of that. Having maintained a stranglehold on his country through 2021, the Belarusian dictator has set his sights on provoking his neighbors.

“Once a distant irritant for European foreign policy mandarins, Lukashenko, at 67, has now become a strategic liability, after Belarusian border police spent the second half of the year funneling desperate migrants over the border into Lithuania, Latvia and Poland.”

In November, images emerged showing a long line of migrants being led towards the border by what appeared to be Belarusian forces.

French Secretary of State for European Affairs, Clement Beaune described the wave of refugees as a “migratory attack” designed to “destabilize the European Union.”

Meanwhile, Ursula von der Leyen said: “This is a hybrid attack. Not a migration crisis.”

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While the placing may have been coincidental, the ranking of the two powerful figures next to one another is an unfortunate side-by-side for the Prime Minister’s spouse.

Ms Johnson has attracted attention for her reportedly very influential role in Downing Street.

An experienced communications expert, Mr Johnson has been seen to influence policy and shift it towards her own areas of interest.

For example, Ms Johnson has a keen interest in the environment, particularly with regard to animal welfare.

Mr Johnson was recently forced to deny reports that he was personally involved in efforts to help the Nazwad animal rights charity evacuate animals of Afghanistan – allegedly prioritising them over people – as the country fell to the Taliban.

This came after it emerged that the charity had lobbied Ms Johnson.

Just today, the couple – who have been married since May – announced the birth of their second child.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the couple said: “The prime minister and Mrs Johnson are delighted to announce the birth of a healthy baby girl at a London hospital earlier today.

“Both mother and daughter are doing very well.

“The couple would like to thank the brilliant NHS maternity team for all their care and support.”

POLITICO have been contacted for comment.

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