British lawmakers urge release of Russia report after Clinton claim



LONDON (dpa)- Opposition lawmakers urged British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to release a report on possible Russian political influence on Tuesday, after former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton said it was "inexplicable and shameful" to withhold it ahead of an election.
The lawmakers have accused Conservative Johnson of a politically motivated delay in publishing the document, which reportedly examines possible Russian influence before the 2016 Brexit referendum, in a bid to withhold potentially embarrassing details until after the December 12 general election.




"The rest of the world is looking on in horror at @BorisJohnson's decision to cover up the report into Russian interference in our democracy," Labour lawmaker David Lammy tweeted.
Clinton told the BBC she was "dumbfounded that this government won't release the report."
"Because every person who votes in this country deserves to see that report before your election happens," she said.
The issue of Russian election interference has consumed Washington since before the last presidential election.
US intelligence agencies and special counsel Robert Mueller assessed that Russia interfered in the 2016 US presidential election to swing the contest in favour of Clinton's rival, Donald Trump.
Junior British treasury minister Rishi Sunak told broadcaster ITV that it was "absolutely normal that reports like this go through a period of vetting."
The report by parliament's Intelligence and Security Committee was finished in March and a vetting process was completed in early October, independent lawmaker Dominic Grieve, who chairs the committee, said last week.
"Holding a report on election interference, until after an election, is shameful," Liberal Democrat lawmaker Tom Brake tweeted on Tuesday.
"What have [the] Conservatives got to hide?" Labour lawmaker Mike Gapes tweeted.
"Dodgy donations? Close links with Putin oligarchs? Direct Kremlin interference in EU referendum? Personal Russian links to Johnson or his key advisers?" Gapes asked.
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Wednesday, November 13th 2019
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