Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Something to hide

Back in June, the UK's Crown Prosecution Service decided that they wouldn't be charging anyone over MI6's complicity in the kidnapping, rendition and torture of Libyan dissident Abdul Hakim Belhaj. There's obvious suspicion that they were lobbied into making that decision by the British government. But oddly, the cabinet Office doesn't want to talk about it:

The previous month Reprieve submitted a request to the Cabinet Office under the Freedom of Information Act asking whether any of its ministers or staff had met or corresponded with the CPS about the investigation.

The Cabinet Office said it would not answer the question as it “could neither confirm nor deny whether any relevant information is held”. The department judged that this refusal was justified in the public interest to protect the enforcement of the law.

As well as running the prime minister’s office, mandarins in the Cabinet Office advise the PM and other senior ministers on intelligence matters. They also co-ordinate the government’s response to sensitive issues relating to the UK’s spies.

The natural conclusion is that the Cabinet Office feels it has something to hide on this, something which would not survive public scrutiny. And the obvious thing they have to hide is that they unlawfully interfered in a prosecution decision to protect themselves and the establishment from facing justice for their crimes.