The Independent – The independent charge: A record number of independent candidates are standing at this general election, aiming to capitalise on growing disillusionment with party politics… Britain’s former ambassador in Uzbekistan is standing against Jack Straw, the Foreign Secretary, in the Blackburn constituency. Mr Murray was removed from his post after he accused the British Government of turning a blind eye to torture in Uzbekistan. The Foreign Office retaliated by accusing him of drunkenness and trading visas for sex with local women. Despite being cleared, the 45-year-old Scot was condemned for speaking out publicly. He is campaigning on Britain’s foreign policy, especially the war in Iraq and MI6’s alleged acceptance of intelligence obtained under torture.