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August 08, 2020

UK parliament report on Russian political 'meddling' out Tuesday - Tip News

UK parliament report on Russian political 'meddling' out Tuesday

UK parliament report on Russian political 'meddling' out Tuesday
'Fears have been raised about possible Russian meddling in Britain's 2016 referendum to leave the European Union ' - By: AFP/File Daniel SORABJI

A long-awaited report into alleged Russian interference in British politics is to be published on Tuesday, the parliament's Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) said on Monday.

"The Committee's Report on Russia, prepared by its predecessor, will be laid before Parliament at 10:30 am (0930 GMT) on Tuesday 21 July," it said on its website.

The 50-page report was compiled last year, but was held back because of the general election in December, despite being cleared for publication.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson also delayed nominating a new committee until last week, finally allowing members to meet and agree a timetable for publication.

The ISC launched an investigation in November 2017 following concerns about Russian attempts to influence the 2016 US Presidential election won by Donald Trump.

Fears were also raised about possible meddling in Britain's referendum to leave the European Union the same year.

But the report is eagerly awaited, particularly by Johnson's political opponents, for details of any Russian donors to his ruling Conservative party.

At the time of the Brexit vote, Johnson's predecessor, Theresa May, accused Russia of "planting fake stories" to "sow discord in the West and undermine our institutions".

British ties with Russia have been soured since London accused Moscow of involvement in an attempt in 2018 to kill former double agent Sergei Skripal with a powerful toxin.

The attack, in Salisbury, southwest England, came 12 years after the radiation poisoning of another former KGB agent, Alexander Litvinenko, in London.

Russia has denied involvement in both and equally dismissed as "groundless" UK, US and Canadian claims it was linked to hackers trying to steal vital coronavirus vaccine research.

Britain has also accused "Russian actors" of seeking to disrupt the December election by putting online leaked documents about a potential post-Brexit UK-US trade deal.

On top of that, a new UK sanctions regime has banned 25 Russian nationals targeting human rights abusers.