Sunday, June 13, 1999 Published at 01:41 GMT 02:41 UK
Davies reveals bisexuality
Ron Davies made the statement after newspaper reports
Former Welsh Secretary Ron Davies has admitted he is bisexual, after months of speculation about his private life.
The circumstances of that night and Mr Davies' sexuality have been the subject of rumour ever since.
In a statement issued by his office, Mr Davies said: "Having discussed the matter with my wife, however, and in order to put a stop to the intolerable stream of lurid and inaccurate stories, I am left with no alternative but to confirm that I am, and have been for some time, bisexual."
The Labour MP and Labour Member of the Welsh Assembly made the comments following a story in the News of The World.
It carries a double-page spread, with photographs, making allegations about his sexual behaviour near his home in Draethen.
Mr Davies denies the story, saying he was entrapped by tabloid journalists.
He said: "During the last week while walking and bird watching near my home I was approached by individuals who, on two separate occasions, attempted to engage me in conversation of a sexual nature. I ended the conversations and walked away.
"I now know that these were tabloid journalists who were clearly trying to entrap me.
"I have always believed that individuals are entitled to privacy. I deeply regret this invasion of my privacy."
Mr Davies added: "I am saddened that I have been forced into making this statement and I hope that it will end the continued intrusion into my private life.
"I hope that I will now be allowed to concentrate on my political work and to deal with the difficult personal issues involved where they belong, within the confines of my family."
A Labour party spokesman refused to be drawn on whether the latest twist in the affair would have any bearing on Mr Davies career as a Labour politician.
There was nothing the party "could usefully add" to the story, he said.
When Agriculture Minister Nick Brown was outed by The Sun newspaper, Prime Minister Tony Blair said the sexuality of his minister was not an issue.
Mr Brown was known to be a homosexual by his colleagues in the Commons and he was given widespread support.
But the situation with Mr Davies was less clear-cut at the time, as it was suggested he did not reveal the full details of his Clapham Common encounter to Mr Blair. Mr Davies maintained he was the victim of a mugging.
He also muddied the waters by saying "we are what we are", which he insisted was not an admission of anything.
Mr Davies' claim that he was entrapped is likely to fuel the row over media intrusion and the methods by which stories are pursued.
It comes just weeks after the News of the World was attacked by many for exposing the England rugby captain Lawrence Dallaglio as an alleged drug user and former dealer - charges he denies.
The newspaper's editor, Phil Hall, said in a statement: "Acting on information from a concerned parent we sent investigative reporters to the scene.
"On two occasions Mr Davies approached our reporters and the conversations were taped."
Mr Hall said his reporters had also watched Mr Davies' movements in the woodland.
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