Boris Johnson is facing renewed calls to stop delaying the publication of a key report assessing the threat posed by Russia to Britain’s democratic processes.
Former attorney general Dominic Grieve on Saturday stressed the document’s publication was essential ahead of the General Election, with it containing information “germane” to voters.
Mr Grieve, the chair of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament, has accused the Prime Minister of sitting on the report ahead of the December 12 vote.
The independent MP who was exiled from the Tories by the PM over his no-deal Brexit opposition is calling on the Conservative leader to publish the committee’s report before Parliament is dissolved on Tuesday.
“I cannot think of a reason why he should wish to prevent this report being published,” Mr Grieve told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
“It’s very demoralising for us when we find we put in months of work and at the end of it we’re not getting an adequate response.”
Asked if there is useful information in the report for voters, he said: “Yes I think there is. It’s about information. I want to emphasise I’m not about to explain what’s in the report, I’m not allowed to and I wouldn’t dream of doing so.
“But the report is informative and people are entitled to information and it seems to us that this report is germane because we do know and I think it is widely accepted that the Russians have sought to interfere in other countries’ democratic processes in the past.”
The House of Commons was previously told the report was sent to the PM on October 17, while there has been no explanation for the delay.
Parliament is expected to sit on Monday and Tuesday ahead of dissolution although proceedings could be brought to an end sooner, which may prevent publication.
Commons Speaker John Bercow called on Leader of the House Jacob Rees-Mogg to expedite the publication.
We need your help ...
The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads.
Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion.
We have been fighting against an establishment that is trying to shut us down. And like most independent media, we don’t have the deep pockets of investors to call on to bail us out.
Can you help by chipping in a few pounds each month?