The Cabinet Office is routinely obstructing freedom of information requests and has a blacklist of journalists working for @guardian and @DailyMirror, @openDemocracy reports. As I discovered last month when inquiring about Lord Lebedev ..…
I discovered the House of Lords Appointments Commission (HOLAC) - which scrutinises proposed peers - hadn't published minutes for over a year. I asked to see 2020 minutes, including from March when Lebedev's peerage was discussed - and rejected on national security grounds..
On 16 October 2020 the Commission wrote back, rejecting my FoI application: "We have concluded that the public interest is best served by withholding the information," it said, adding it intended to publish the minutes in the "near future". I appealed ..
On 12 November HOLAC rejected my appeal. In the meantime it published the relevant minutes, below. @openDemocracy has raised an important issue. Michael Gove's Cabinet Office is routinely blocking legit FoI requests from reporters it regards as "hostile"…
Here's the piece I was working on when I made my unsuccessful FoI request. Boris #Johnson attended Lebedev's Xmas 2017 party. The future PM was spotted in the upstairs party room - decorated with #Stalin portrait - where class-A drugs were later consumed…
About to talk to @suhasinih - diplomatic editor of @the_hindu - about #Kremlin influence in US/UK and my new book Shadow State: Murder, Mayhem and #Russia's Remarking of the West. Part of the @JaipurLitFest in NYC, beginning 9.15am EST, 2.15pm London

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Luke Harding

Luke Harding Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @lukeharding1968

21 Oct
Drugs, a mural of Stalin, and Boris #Johnson - our exclusive investigation into Evgeny Lebedev's "hedonistic" parties in London and Italy and his decade-long relationship with the British prime minister. By me and @dansabbagh…
Johnson made Lebedev a peer in July. He's due to take up his seat shortly in the House of Lords. Security sources tell us he is *still* deemed to be a potential security risk, albeit a low tier one, because of his #Moscow-based father Alexander who was in the #KGB
In March the House of Lords Appointments Commission wrote to Johnson calling for Lebedev's peerage to be withdrawn, as reported by @BylineTimes. This followed a #security briefing. No 10 resubmitted Lebedev's name in July, when the Commission reluctantly approved his appointment
Read 8 tweets
21 Oct
Here's my exclusive interview with Igor Danchenko, the #Russian analyst behind the Steele dossier. He says he "stands by" his work, including allegations that Trump was compromised in #Moscow's Ritz-Carlton hotel. "I got it right," he says…
Last week Danchenko sent cease-and-desist letters to Trump's counsel and to Republican senator Lindsey Graham. Both have suggested he's a suspected #Russian spy who fed disinformation to Steele. The allegations - retweeted by Trump - are "completely false", his lawyer wrote
Danchenko was outed in July, after William Barr declassified his 2017 FBI interview. He says the "smear campaign" by Graham and other senior Congressional Republicans was done to distract from the damning Senate intelligence committee report into the #Trump campaign and #Russia
Read 8 tweets
18 Aug
I've speed read the Senate intelligence committee's report on Russian interference. Story for @GuardianUS coming shortly! It's a treasure trove of new detail about #Trump-#Russia and provides the most compelling account yet of what goes on inside the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Moscow
A Russian intelligence officer is stationed permanently at the hotel, notes who checks in and out, and presides over a "network" of cameras including in guests' bedrooms, the report says. There are prostitutes under the control of an unnamed spy agency. We can assume #FSB
The committee doesn't confirm if the Trump 'golden showers' story is true. It is generally scathing about Christopher Steele. Nonetheless, it collaborates the essence of the dossier: that the Ritz-Carlton is a #kompromat factory, set up to ensnare the unwary and the reckless
Read 7 tweets
22 Jun
Exclusive: MPs who drew up the #Russia report were told the #Kremlin has a "likely hold" over Donald #Trump and there were "indications" #Moscow interfered in and may have covertly funded the 2016 #Brexit vote  - my new book Shadow State reveals…
The evidence - given by former MI6 officer Christopher Steele - is the most compelling explanation so far as to why Boris #Johnson still refuses to publish the missing #Russia report, which he suppressed before last December's UK general election
In a confidential 2018 memo to the British parliament's intelligence and security committee (ISC) Steele accuses Theresa May and Johnson - at that point foreign secretary - of putting "party political interests" above "national security" - a "serious mistake", in his view
Read 12 tweets
9 Mar
Revealed: Russia 'hired network of Britons to go after enemies of #Putin', according to testimony given to parliament’s intelligence and security committee - the #Russia report, suppressed by Boris Johnson. My exclusive with ⁦…
The @guardian is publishing Bill Browder’s evidence to the ISC, delivered in 2018. We don’t know if it features in final report. It paints a depressing picture of British former intelligence officers, MPs, PR guys lobbying on behalf of #Kremlin interests in return for £££££
The eventual report contains two sections - one public, the other secret. The confidential part has already been ‘published’ or circulated inside Whitehall, among spooks and government insiders. It’s this section which is likely to discuss #Russian emigre donations to #Tory party
Read 4 tweets
11 Feb 19
Revealed: wife of #Putin's spokesman faces questions over US tax affairs - my latest with @jonswaine in New York…
Tatiana Navka lived and trained in the US for over a decade. She was a US permanent resident up until Sep 2015 - the year she married Putin's press sec Dmitry Peskov. Navka was obliged to declare her global income. Including from #Russian sources ..
Documents suggest she claimed tax relief on a house she 'sold' in 2009. In fact, the house in New Jersey was repossessed by her bank last month. Navka and her former husband Alexander Zhulin owe $$$$$ in unpaid property tax..
Read 9 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!