THE Prime Minister has said the Union flag should take centre stage at an upcoming global climate summit in Glasgow, but First Minister Nicola Sturgeon should not be “anywhere near” it.

The UN’s COP26 meeting, which will take place in Scotland’s largest city in December 2020, will decide the direction of future international efforts to prevent the climate crisis

About 30,000 delegates, including world leaders, will attend in what is the biggest international summit to be hosted in the UK.

Speaking at a Tory conference drinks reception on Sunday, Boris Johnson was filmed saying the Union flag should stand out at any Westminster-funded policies and events.

The PM told Tories: “I’ll tell you what we’ll do. We make sure – with every policy we pursue, with every investment we make in Scotland, then we put a Union flag on it.

“For instance, the COP26 climate change summit that’s going to be held ... the leaders of the entire world will come to Glasgow.

“I guess I don’t mind seeing a Saltire or two on that summit, but I want to see a Union flag – I don’t want to see Nicola Sturgeon anywhere near it, because the Scottish Nationalist Party [sic] didn’t secure that summit in Glasgow, it was the United Kingdom Government.”

In response, the First Minister’s spokesman slammed Johnson, accusing him of acting “so childishly”.

He said: “Boris Johnson certainly sounded like he was enjoying himself at the Tory drinks reception.

“But out in the real world people will be deeply embarrassed to hear their Prime Minister acting so childishly.

“It is right that the COP26 conference should come to Scotland given our leadership in climate action. We were one of the first countries in the world to acknowledge the global climate emergency and the Scottish Government has introduced the toughest targets in the UK to ensure our action matches the scale of our climate ambitions.”

He continued: “When it comes to issues of common concern such as climate change, the SNP Government are proud to play our part and work in partnership with other governments – something that Boris Johnson seems completely incapable of doing.”

Scottish Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse also hit out at the PM over the claims in a Twitter thread that he said showed the “real truth” behind the comments.

He posted: “The real truth behind the pompous, arrogant, unelected & anti-democratic Prime Minister’s bluster is he knows he’d be embarrassed by his own Government’s weaker record on the #ClimateEmergency when contrasted with that of Scotland’s First Minister & our Scottish Government.”

He continued to say Johnson’s quotes had sent a strong message to the international community ahead of the global event.

“However, BoJo’s inadvertently sent a powerful message to international community, incl. @UN itself, our partners in @ClimateGroup & #Under2Coalition, @WWFScotland /International NGOs, about progressive Scotland’s treatment within UK & our case for a seat of our own @ the table.”

The city of Glasgow was chosen to co-host the major event with Italy earlier this month. It will welcome up to 200 heads of government from around the world to Glasgow.