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26 June 2018

posted 26 Jun 2018, 03:59 by ISC Admin   [ updated 26 Jun 2018, 04:03 ]
The Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, the Rt. Hon. Dominic Grieve QC MP, has today issued the following statement:
I have seen the allegations this morning that the US has censored our report on detention and rendition which we will be publishing on Thursday. I am - exceptionally - making a comment ahead of the publication of the reports because I believe that otherwise we risk attention being distracted from the key headlines in those reports.

The first point to make is that the Committee has agreed to redact just one word in over 300 pages to meet a US security concern. On Thursday I will happily point you to where those asterisks are in the report and you can see for yourself that it is not a central issue, nor a controversial issue. The Committee does not agree to redact material in its reports on grounds of embarrassment to anyone. So I can assure you that the US has not made wholesale redactions to the reports, as suggested.

The second point I wish to make is that I find it unacceptable that the Government has briefed the media on our reports before they are published. These are not the Government's reports to trail or leak as they wish. The Government is, exceptionally, given sight of the reports ahead of publication so that they can check there is nothing in them which would harm UK national security. The draft reports should have been kept on an exceptionally tight distribution within Government. It appears that that procedure has been abused in order to leak details of the reports, so as to draw the sting on Thursday.

I believe that the reports make a very strong statement, and I hope that attention will be rightly focused on that and there will be no further attempts to distract from it.