Comedian Rowan Atkinson says Boris Johnson shouldn’t have to apologise for ‘good’ burka joke

In a letter to The Times the Mr Bean comedian insisted the former Foreign Secretary should not apologise and defended his right to poke fun at religion.

He wrote: "As a lifelong beneficiary of the freedom to make jokes about religion, I do think Boris Johnson's joke about wearers of the burka resembling letterboxes is a pretty good one.

"All jokes about religion cause offence, so it's pointless apologising for them.

"You should only really apologise for a bad joke.

"On that basis no apology is required."

It came as a fresh YouGov poll for The Times showed the Tories had stretched a four point poll lead over Labour.

The survey suggested the ongoing anti-Semitism scandal has damaged Jeremy Corbyn's party.

Some 39 per cent of people polled said they'd vote Conservative – one point up from last week.

Quizzed on who would make the best PM, Theresa May is ahead of the Labour leader by 154 points – 7 ahead of last week.

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