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    Tuesday, 16 October 2007

    The public interest?: whistle for it...

    A story I missed last week concerned the charging of a Foreign Office official for alleged breach of the Official Secrets Act. Derek Pasquill is said to have passed information to the New Statesman, the Observer and the Policy Exchange think tank, where it was deployed liberally by journalist Martin Bright. The New Stateman has gone to town (to listen to the article, try here), charging the Government with deliberately using tactics designed 'to intimidate anyone in the civil service who has reservations about dangerous policy, and who might be minded to expose it in the public interest'. They consider the prosecution to be 'an abuse of state power, designed merely to spare the embarrassment of ministers' and identify 'malice and hypocrisy at the heart of Whitehall's approach to whistleblowers'. For reasons stated, its difficult to disagree [the nice jpg is lifted from the New Stateman editorial].

    1 comment:

    Andrew Scott said...

    For a general piece on secrecy laws, written by Bright himself on the back of his recent experiences, see this in the Index on Censorship.

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