Published: Sun, July 14, 2019

UK police identify suspect behind leaked envoy memos

UK police identify suspect behind leaked envoy memos

"I wish the British ambassador well", Trump told reporters on Friday as he left the White House to head to Wisconsin.

The Metropolitan police have launched a criminal investigation on Friday into the leaked emails of Sir Kim Darroch, the United Kingdom (UK) ambassador to the United States.

Britain's ambassador to Washington said US President Donald Trump pulled out of the Iranian nuclear deal because it was associated with his predecessor, Barack Obama, leaked documents showed on Saturday, according to AFP, citing a British newspaper.

The latest memo to be disclosed was said to have been written by Mr Darroch in May 2018 following a visit to Washington by Mr Johnson - who was then foreign secretary - in a last ditch attempt to persuade the Trump administration not to abandon the Iran deal.

According to BBC, Darroch reportedly described the decision as ' diplomatic vandalism.' He also reportedly wrote in the memo that Trump was pulling out due to "personality reasons" and because it had been claimed as a major breakthrough by Obama when he was the US President.

Trump posted Darroch was "a very stupid guy" and a "pompous fool".

However, he was widely criticised by editors and politicians including the foreign minister Jeremy Hunt and ex-London Mayor Boris Johnson, the two men battling to replace Theresa May as prime minister when she steps down in just over a week's time.

"We have to make sure that we defend the right of journalists to publish leaks when they are in the national interest", Hunt said.

British officials say they believe the leak was not a result of computer hacking and seems to have been carried out by an insider.

He said the focus of the inquiry by the counter terrorism command - which investigates breaches of the OSA - was "clearly on identifying who was responsible for the leak".

Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said the Metropolitan Police had been given legal advice that there is "no public interest defence".

The ambassador resigned on Wednesday, saying it was now "impossible" to do his job.

They warned that journalists who released further details of the former ambassador's communications could be in breach of the Official Secrets Act.

Darroch also referred to disagreements within the administration, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo distancing himself from Trump's decision.

The incident has caused the British government considerable embarrassment, especially considering that the partnership between the two countries was just trumpeted during Trump's state visit to the United Kingdom in early June.

A UK Foreign Office spokesman told CNN on Saturday that whoever leaked the cables "should face the consequences of their actions".

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

Ian Murray, executive director of the Society of Editors, said: "I can not think of a worse example of a heavy-handed approach by the police to attempt to curtail the role of the media as a defence against the powerful and those in authority".

Like this: