Tuesday 23 January 2008
The Information Tribunal has today ordered the Foreign Office to release the secret draft of the Iraq WMD dossier written by former top spin doctor.
The move casts doubt over the government’s claim that the document played no part in the production of the dossier.
However, the Tribunal has allowed a handwritten note to be redacted which the Foreign Office claimed would be damaging to international relations.
The FCO has said that it is studying the Tribunal decision and declined to name the authors of the handwritten comments.
The secret draft was written by John Williams, the FCO’s then director of communications, on 7 and 8 September 2002, just days after Tony Blair announced that the government would publish a dossier of intelligence showing that Saddam Hussein threatened the world with his weapons of mass destruction.
It preceded what the government would later claim to be the first draft, written by Joint Intelligence Committee chairman John Scarlett on 10 September.
'No more draft dodging' by Chris Ames on The Guardian's commentisfree
Read the Tribunal's decision