Questions raised by Yvonne Fletcher case | Letters

Libya 0 Comment 1


Richard Norton-Taylor and Dr Kevin Bannon on the ‘reasons of national security’ behind the end of an investigation into a man arrested over the murder

Your report (Suspect in Yvonne Fletcher murder freed after national security worries, 17 May) raises a serious unanswered question: what were the “reasons of national security” that meant “key material” was not made available to the police for use in court “in evidential form”?

The answer could lie in a number of unchallenged reports that, a day before Fletcher was shot, GCHQ intercepted a prior warning of a possible attack on demonstrators outside the Libyan People’s Bureau in London. A message from the Bureau to Tripoli included the option: “To fire on them from within the Bureau”. This is reported in Spies, Lies and Whistleblowers, by the former MI5 officer Annie Machon; in GCHQ, The Uncensored Story of Britain’s Most Secret Intelligence Agency, by Richard Aldrich; and in Christopher Andrew’s official history of MI5, The Defence of the Realm. GCHQ’s intelligence was not passed on to the Metropolitan police or MI5 until after the shooting.
Richard Norton-Taylor
London

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