UK envoy said Trump ditched Iran deal to spite Obama report

first_imgLondon: Britain’s ambassador to Washington believed US President Donald Trump pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal because it was associated with his predecessor Barack Obama, according to leaked documents published Saturday. “The administration is set upon an act of diplomatic vandalism, seemingly for ideological and personality reasons — it was Obama’s deal,” ambassador Kim Darroch wrote in a diplomatic cable in May 2018. The cable was included in a second batch of leaked reports published by the Mail on Sunday newspaper, the first of which caused Darroch to resign earlier this week. Also Read – Imran Khan arrives in China, to meet Prez Xi Jinping Separately, the Sunday Times reported that a government investigation into the leak had identified a civil servant as the person responsible. Working with officials from the National Cyber Security Centre, part of spy agency GCHQ, and MI6, the probe has homed in on a suspect who had access to historical Foreign Office files, the paper said. The first leaked reports authored by Darroch were published last weekend, causing major turmoil between Britain and its closest ally. Also Read – US blacklists 28 Chinese entities over abuses in Xinjiang The ambassador was reported to have described the White House as “inept”, prompting Trump to claim the ambassador was a “pompous fool” whom he would no longer deal with. Darroch resigned on Wednesday, saying it was now “impossible” to do his job. In May 2018, Britain’s then-foreign minister Boris Johnson went to Washington to try to persuade Trump not to abandon the Iran deal. In a cable sent afterwards, Darroch reportedly indicated there were divisions in Trump’s team over the decision, and criticised the White House for a lack of long-term strategy. “They can’t articulate any ‘day-after’ strategy; and contacts with State Department this morning suggest no sort of plan for reaching out to partners and allies, whether in Europe or the region,” he wrote. He reported back that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, during his talks with Johnson, “did some subtle distancing by talking throughout about ‘the President’s decision'”. The newspaper reported that, according to Darroch, Pompeo also hinted that he had tried but failed to “sell” a revised text to Trump. In 2015, the United States, China, Britain, France, Russia and Germany signed a deal with Iran to limit its nuclear programme in exchange for a partial lifting of international economic sanctions. Trump had long been critical of the deal and withdrew the United States on May 8, 2018. As well as a government investigation into the leaks, police are also looking into a potential breach of the Official Secrets Act. London’s Metropolitan Police sparked widespread condemnation on Saturday after a warning to journalists that publishing leaked documents could be a criminal matter. Johnson, who is now in the race to succeed May as prime minister, said that prosecuting media outlets would have a “chilling effect on public debate”.last_img read more

Former Australian PM defends stand he took on Sri Lanka

West Papua is a province of Indonesia, which has been fighting for independence. Indonesia has been accused of shooting and beating activists and there have been claims of torture.When it came to stopping the asylum seeker boats, Abbott says that even before he was sworn in as prime minister he met with border protection agencies and told them their duty was “to stop the boats by all lawful means notwithstanding fierce controversy at home and possible tension abroad”.He continues: “Some media claimed that harsh treatment of boat people was being hidden. Some government lawyers claimed that the operation was beyond power. Some senior officials fretted about the consequences for our relationship with Indonesia. Abbott has penned a 3,706-word essay for the rightwing magazine Quadrant defending and celebrating his two-year period in office, The Guardian reported. Australia’s former prime minister says he is proud of his decision to not “join the human rights lobby” and take a stand against what he describes “tough but probably unavoidable actions taken” by the Sri Lankan government during the civil war there. Abbott says not mentioning the alleged war crimes would have pleased the Sri Lankan president, which was important because it was a “seminal truth” that “all politics is personal” – an aphorism he attributes to the US vice-president, Joe Biden. He suggests his diplomacy allowed the two countries to cooperate more strongly to stop asylum seekers arriving by boat to Australia.That sort of diplomacy is also embodied, he says, by an interaction he had with Indonesia: “As a very early sign of good faith to the Indonesians, I had West Papuan activists, who’d arrived in the Torres Strait claiming asylum, quietly returned to Papua New Guinea.” “But the government simply had to stop the boats – our national interest and our self-respect as a country demanded it – and succeed we did through an indefatigable resolve to get it done.” Former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has defended the stand he took on Sri Lanka when he was Prime Minister.Abbott was accused of backing the Mahinda Rajapaksa led Government when it was accused of grave human rights abuses. He adds: “A country that can’t control its borders sooner or later loses control of its future.”Abbott also trumpets his efforts against terrorism. Because of his decisions – and “despite the Turnbull government’s recent decision not to commit specialist troops to ground operations in the Middle East” – Australia is the biggest contributor, after the US, to the battle against Islamic State. read more