Chris Pincher seeking 'professional medical support' following groping allegations

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Chris Pincher, who lost the Conservative whip after being accused of groping two men, said he is seeking "professional medical support" as he hopes to return to his duties as an MP "as soon as possible".

In a statement the Tamworth MP said he "respected" the prime minister's decision to suspend the whip, adding he would "co-operate fully" with an inquiry into his behaviour.

"I respect the prime minister's decision to suspend the whip whilst an inquiry is under way, and I will co-operate fully with it," he added.

"As I told the prime minister, I drank far too much on Wednesday night, embarrassing myself and others and I am truly sorry for the upset I caused.

"The stresses of the last few days, coming on top of those over the last several months, have made me accept that I will benefit from professional medical support.

"I am in the process of seeking that now, and I hope to be able to return to my constituency duties as soon as possible."

Prime Minister Boris Johnson faced pressure over his delay in suspending the Tory whip from Mr Pincher.

Analysis: PM shamed into disciplining close ally accused of groping

Mr Pincher quit as Tory deputy chief whip when allegations of groping at London's Carlton Club emerged on Thursday.

The MP "groped two men in front of others" at the club in the St James's area of central London, a government source told Sky News.

One of them was an MP, and the second may also be a member of parliament, the source added.

He will now sit as an independent in the Commons but remain MP for Tamworth in Staffordshire.

But his future hangs in the balance as critics insist his position is untenable and are demanding a by-election.

The controversy engulfing Mr Pincher comes as a shadow cabinet minister claimed parliament is 'not a safe place to work'.

Shadow armed forces minister, Luke Pollard, told Sky News that "wholesale change" is needed as he called for "higher standards" in politics.

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