Report of the British Parliament about the intervention of Russia in election: London greatly underestimated the Russian threat

KIEV. July 22. UNN. In Britain published a report “Russia” about interference in the British elections. The document says the Kremlin’s attempts to interfere in the internal politics of the UK in 2014 – namely, the attempt to affect the results of the referendum on Scottish independence. The authors of the report found no direct evidence that Russia is somehow trying to affect the outcome of a referendum on Brexit. It is reported by UNN with reference to BBC.

As writes the edition, the December leaks suggested that the report will be referred to nine Russian businessmen, who are the donors of the conservatives. But in the published version, at least in its open part is their names are not called.

“It seems that Russia considers Britain one of its main goals in the West from the point of view of intelligence. And although we don’t get threats, such as the countries bordering Russia, our witnesses suggest that the list of “priorities” we are after the U.S. and NATO. This is likely due to our close cooperation with the United States,” reads the report.

Although no names in the report, it still remains a reference to a kind of “Russian oligarchs” close to Vladimir Putin, who has successfully integrated into the political life of Britain.

“Russia has never interfered in the electoral processes in any country in the world: neither the United States nor in Britain, nor in other countries. We don’t do it themselves and do not tolerate, when other countries are trying to interfere in our political Affairs,” — said almost simultaneously with the publication of the report a spokesman for the Russian President, Dmitry Peskov, was quoted.

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Even before the publication of the report of the British journalists speculated about what it could be discussed. And found “skeletons in the closet” not only the current Prime Minister Boris Johnson, and his predecessors, Theresa may and David Cameron. Recalled the reaction of the British authorities for the murder of Alexander Litvinenko, but rather the years that it took the UK to start a public investigation.

“I’m afraid that the main culprit is the Russian money, — the day of the publication of the report suggested Times columnist Edward Lucas (he’s one of those people whom the authors interviewed during their work). — This is the culprit, on the one hand, and feeding the influential industry of money laundering, and with another — stimulates the market of mansions and penthouses. In addition, it brings donations to political figures and their supporters, and not least in the Conservative party”.

We can say that in the end came true made a few months before the publication of the report the suggestion of a correspondent bi-Bi-si on security issues Gordon Corera. He said that in the report less evidence than many expect, but they more than you expect from others. Indeed, the document contains no information that would prove that Russia has been successful in British elections. We are talking about attempts.

However, not all of the evidence and justification was included in the public version of the report — some facts will remain only in a classified Annex to protect sources and to keep secret methods of investigation. Access unedited versions will have only officials at the highest level.

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The report lists the main threats which, according to British MPs, coming from Russia. This cyber threats, misinformation and its impact on social and political life in the country, as well as immigrants from Russia who moved to Britain, went to the local passport and began to actively participate in the political life of the country.

Although this report focuses on threats from Russia, judging by the wording, its main goal is to get to work the British government. For example, the authors of the report conclude that despite the obvious evidence that Britain was targeted in a campaign of misinformation, no one Agency in the country has claimed responsibility for the solution of this problem.

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The report, the publication of which was waiting for ten months, came on the last day of the work of the British Parliament: today, July 22, members of the summer recess.

The initial composition of the intelligence Committee was preparing a document half a year, and to publish it initially planned in November 2019, however, the government delayed publication for a month. This month in Britain, held new parliamentary elections in which the conservatives gained a majority, and Boris Johnson has approved the Prime Minister of the country.

Opponents of the labour party blamed the government: the timely appearance of the report, they believed, could significantly affect the outcome of the elections. At least Boris Johnson had additional questions.

But even after a triumph for the conservatives the election, the report never saw the light of day — officially waited until they form a new Committee. Boris Johnson all this time, said that the scandal of the document “over-hyped” and there is no evidence that Russia allegedly interfered in British elections.

A new scandal erupted when forming a Committee, whose task is to supervise the work of the British intelligence services. The main favorite for the Chairman of the Committee was conservative Chris Grayling, which in different years was the Minister of justice and Minister of transport of the country.

But — to the surprise of many — the position and got his party colleague Julian Lewis, who himself announced his candidacy. The source of force in the British government says that Mr. Lewis “acted together with labour and other members of the opposition, pursuing its own goals.” For this outrage he was expelled from the party, but the Chairman of the Committee, he still was. I believe that the victory of Mr. Lewis contributed to the release of the report on the intervention in the elections.

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However, before the release of the report of the head of the Ministry of foreign Affairs Dominic Raab said that Russia, probably, tried to interfere in the elections of 2019 — the ones which were won by the conservatives.

Mr. Raab stated that Russia had illegally obtained an official paper, which contained details of the trade negotiations between Britain and the USA, and then posted them on the Internet. This, according to Mr. Raab, took advantage of the labour party in its election campaign.

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Commenting on the statement of Mr. Raab, the Russian Ambassador in London Andrey Kelin told the BBC: “We do not interfere. We see no reason to exclude interference, because for us it doesn’t matter the head of the country’s Conservative party or the labour — we will still try to improve those relations, that is.”

Russia traditionally rejects charges of meddling in elections. However, last week the UK, US and Canada simultaneously accused Russian hackers in the attack on the medical lab of the West. The goal is a vaccine against coronavirus.

The Deputy Minister of internal Affairs of great Britain on security James Brokenshire told the BBC admitted that it is a “near certainty” in which the group attacked the lab. Moreover, according to him, West believes that this group of hackers linked to the Russian intelligence services.

The representative of the President of Russia Dmitry Peskov said: “We do not perceive such accusations, as well as regular allegations of meddling in the elections of 2019”.

Two Russian businessmen mentioned in the British report have already commented on the BBC the situation. Alexander Lebedev called it a “laugh”, and Alexander Temerko said openly that friendly with Boris Johnson and, in addition, not just the financial supports of the conservatives, and is a member of the party.

According to the publication, any person registered in the UK as a voter, may be the donor of political parties. Moreover, a complete list of those who have donated money regularly published on the website of the electoral Commission — including the amounts that these people are moved by different political forces. So the fact that the owners of British passports — even immigrants from Russia — transferred money to the conservatives, yet does not speak about the attempts to interfere in the elections.