Monday, 21 October, 2019

Leaked UK memo says Trump axed Iran deal to spite Obama

Johnson says his comments about U.S. envoy were a factor in his resignation Boris Johnson a leadership candidate for Britain's Conservative Party appears on BBC TV's The Andrew Neil Interviews in LondonMore
Steven Clarke | 14 July, 2019, 15:43

Boris Johnson (L) refused to back British ambassador Kim Darroch (R) during a televised debate.

Scotland Yard is at the centre of a furious row over press freedom after warning journalists not to publish any more leaked cables from Britain's USA ambassador Sir Kim Darroch.

Britain's now former ambassador to the US was convinced a year ago that President Donald Trump scrapped the Iran nuclear pact in part simply because it was forged by Barack Obama, according to another leaked diplomatic memo.

The former British Ambassador is said to have highlighted splits amongst United States presidential advisors and that the White House did not have a "day-to-day" strategy of what to do following withdrawal from the deal.

Last week the newspaper published other leaked memos from Darroch about Trump in which the diplomat described the USA leader as "inept", "insecure" and "incompetent" and his administration as "uniquely dysfunctional".

His comments drew a furious response from President Trump who denounced him as a "very stupid guy" and a "pompous fool" and said that the White House would no longer deal with him.

At the same time, Assistant Police Commissioner Neil Basu issued a warning that any further publication of the cables could constitute a criminal offence and called on journalists to return any leaked government documents.

Under diplomatic conventions and British law, the contents of diplomatic mail are meant to be confidential and were only supposed to have been seen by a handful of United Kingdom civil service officials.

London's Metropolitan Police said its counter-terrorism command, which takes national responsibility for investigating allegations of criminal breaches of the Official Secrets Act, was leading the investigation. Breaking the act carries a maximum sentence of two years in prison, though prosecutions are rare.

Lil Nas X Shares Old Town Road Remix Featuring Young Thug
Just when you'd think Lil Nas X is running out of steam, he drops a new song (or a version of a song). The single is the first song in history to sell 10,000,000 copies while remaining No.1 on Billboard .

The head of Britain's diplomatic service, Simon McDonald, said this week he was "bracing" himself for further leaks.

The favourite to become the next Prime Minister Boris Johnson was heckled during a hustings event.

Basu also urged the leakers of the already published documents to "turn yourself in at the earliest opportunity, explain yourself and face the consequences".

The former defence secretary Sir Michael Fallon, however, prompted outrage after he told the Today programme that journalists should be subject to the Official Secrets Act.

"I defend to the hilt the right of the press to publish those leaks if they receive them & judge them to be in the public interest: that is their job", he said.

The Foreign Office criticized the leak but did not challenge the authenticity of the memos, which characterized the Trump administration as chaotic and inept.

Darroch resigned on Wednesday, though many commentators and even government officials standing up for him pointed out that he was perfectly entitled to provide a frank assessment of his host country's government.

Shortly after, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, among the deal's most vocal critics, boasted to Likud party activists that he had been the one to convince Trump to pull out of the accord.

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