Tory press officer confronted while observing Jeremy Corbyn rally

The party official was confronted by Channel 4 News

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A Conservative press officer has been confronted after being found observing a rally for the Labour leadership frontrunner Jeremy Corbyn.

Mike Watkinson was spotted by Channel 4 News journalist Michael Crick quietly sitting in the crowd at a meeting in Nuneaton.

The journalist confronted Mr Watkinson, who was patiently reading the Daily Mail newspaper while he waited for the rally to start.

The press officer responded to his name and muttered "I don't know what you're talking about."

Upon seeing the journalist and camera crew Mr Watkinson rose to his feet and silently walked out of the room towards his car

In a painfully awkward video of the incident the journalist asks the Tory official who has sent him to the event, but receives no response.

Channel 4 News reported that Jeremy Corbyn said of the Tory official: "He was welcome to stay. We wouldn't have thrown him out."

It is fairly common practice for parties to send press officers to opponents' events and conferences to try and glean information that could be used against them.

A Conservative spokesperson said it was aware the staff member had attended the rally.