United Kingdom police to investigate leak of ambassador's memos

Nellie Chapman
July 13, 2019

According to Britain's Mail on Sunday newspaper, which reported on Darroch's memos, the envoy wrote there was a "credible path" for Trump winning a second term.

The inquiry by the Metropolitan police counter-terrorism command, which is responsible for investigating breaches of the Official Secrets Act, was announced in a statement attributed to Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday offered good wishes to Britain's former ambassador to Washington, Kim Darroch, who resigned this week after stinging criticism from the Republican president following leaked diplomatic cables.

Asked by The Telegraph how he felt about Sir Kim's resignation the US President said: "Look, I wish the British ambassador well".

The US President reacted by lashing out in a series of tweets, calling Darroch a "wacky Ambassador" and "very stupid guy".

Met Police Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said: "Given the widely reported consequences of that leak, I am satisfied that there has been damage caused to United Kingdom worldwide relations, and there would be clear public interest in bringing the person or people responsible to justice".

In an interview on Friday, Johnson denied he was responsible for Darroch's resignation, but admitted his comments had been a factor.

Boris Johnson (L) refused to back British ambassador Kim Darroch (R) during a televised debate. You can stop this now.

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Almost a week after the cables were leaked, Basu's announcement of the investigation ended with a pointed call to the media.

He urged the culprits: "turn yourself in at the earliest opportunity, explain yourself and face the consequences".

"The publication of leaked communications, knowing the damage they have caused or are likely to cause, may also be a criminal matter", said Mr Basu.

In the Commons on Thursday, Foreign Office minister Sir Alan Duncan said an internal Whitehall inquiry had found no evidence the leak was the result of computer hacking.

He added that the British have "got to stop their leaking problems there just like they have to stop them in our country".

"There were lots of factors in his resignation and I would suggest President Trump's response, and the President had actually banned him, made it very hard for him to do his job".

Trump earlier had publicly blasted the former British diplomat after reports unveiled details of Darroch's telegrams assessing the USA government and Trump's administration.

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