Boris Johnson said on Thursday he was "very, very sorry" for comments made in a 2004 Spectator article about Liverpool fans involved in the Hillsborough disaster, the day after a devastating report on the tragedy was published.

The magazine, of which Johnson was editor at the time, attributed blame for the 96 deaths to Liverpool's "victim status" which had "created a peculiar, and deeply unattractive psyche among many Liverpudlians.

"They see themselves whenever possible as victims, and resent their victim status; yet at the same time they wallow in it," the leader read.

Speaking in central London at the new Amazon headquarters, the London mayor said: "I'm very, very glad that this report does lay to rest the false allegation that was made at the time about the behaviour of those fans.

"I was very, very sorry in 2004 that the Spectator did carry an editorial that partially repeated those allegations, I apologised then and I apologise now.

"I do hope the families of the 96 victims will take some comfort from this report and that they can reach some sort of closure."

david cameron

David Cameron apologised on Wednesday for the handling of the Hillsborough tragedy

Mr Johnson went on: "I'm glad that this independent report has finally nailed the myth that drunken fans were in any way responsible for the deaths of 96 people.

"That was a lie that unfortunately and very, very regrettably got picked up in a leader in the Spectator in 2004, which I was then editing.

"I went to Liverpool to apologise unreservedly for that mistake and I repeat that apology today."

Johnson, who had previously apologised for the article in the same year, followed David Cameron in apologising for the deaths of 96 Liverpool fans.

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  • Hillsborough

    LIVERPOOL SUPPORTERS ARE HELPED AFTER BEING CRUSHED AGAINST THE SAFETY

  • Hillsborough

    Fan in despair after the Hillsborough Disaster

  • Hillsborough Tragedy

    Fans leave the ground after the disaster

  • Liverpool v Nottingham Forest - Hillsborough

    One of the fans who came to see the semi -final between Nottingham Forest & Liverpool, is led away after surviving the disaster

  • Hillsborough Tragedy

    The injured are carried away on boards by fans who came to see a game of football

  • Hillsborough

    Fans try to get away from the crush of the crowd as they pour into the ground

  • Hillsborough papers published

    File photo dated 15/04/1989 of Liverpool fans trying to escape severe overcrowding during the FA Cup semi-final football match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at Hillsborough. The families of 96 people killed in the Hillsborough tragedy will see thousands of official documents relating to the disaster for the first time today.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    File photo dated 15/04/1989 of a Liverpool fan at Hillsborough after their FA Cup semi-final football match against Nottingham Forest. The families of 96 people killed in the Hillsborough tragedy will see thousands of official documents relating to the disaster for the first time today.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    File photo dated 22/10/11 of a banner in memory of those who died in the Hillsborough tragedy at Anfield, as the families of 96 people killed in the Hillsborough tragedy will see thousands of official documents relating to the disaster for the first time today.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    File photo dated 15/04/2011 of a Hillsborough banner at Anfield, as the families of 96 people killed in the Hillsborough tragedy will see thousands of official documents relating to the disaster for the first time today.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    File photo dated 15/4/2009 of a hans paying tribute at the Hillsborough Memorial in Liverpool. he families of 96 people killed in the Hillsborough tragedy will see thousands of official documents relating to the disaster for the first time today.

  • Liverpool Prepares For Hillsborough Disclosure Day

    LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 10: The Hillsborough memorial is covered with tributes at Anfield Stadium, the home of Liverpool Football Club on September 10, 2012 in Liverpool, England. On Wednesday relatives and friends of the 96 victims of the Hillsborough football stadium tragedy in Sheffield on 15 April 1989 will see the full disclosure of all documents relating to the disaster when they are made public at Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

  • Liverpool Prepares For Hillsborough Disclosure Day

    LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 10: The Hillsborough memorial is covered with tributes at Anfield Stadium, the home of Liverpool Football Club on September 10, 2012 in Liverpool, England. On Wednesday relatives and friends of the 96 victims of the Hillsborough football stadium tragedy in Sheffield on 15 April 1989 will see the full disclosure of all documents relating to the disaster when they are made public at Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

  • Hillsborough papers to be published

    The front cover of 'With Hope In Your Heart' written by 51 year old Chris Whittle who lives in Burnley.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    Hillsborough Family Support Group members during a press conference at Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral after the release of previously unpublished papers realting to the Hillsborough disaster.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    Hillsborough Family Support Group members Jenny Hicks (left) and Margaret Aspinall (right) during a press conference at Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral after the release of previously unpublished papers realting to the Hillsborough disaster.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    Hillsborough Family Support Group member Margaret Aspinall, the mother of Hillsborough victim James Aspinall, during a press conference at Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral after the release of previously unpublished papers realting to the Hillsborough disaster.

  • Hillsborough papers published

    Hillsborough Family Support Group member Trevor Hicks speaks during a press conference at Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral after the release of previously unpublished papers realting to the Hillsborough disaster.