Document 14 – Straw

Back to document index

Murder In Samarkand – Document 14 – Minute of 26 September 2003


I received many documents through an application under the Data Protection Act. These have been edited by the Foreign Office, with areas blacked out in the “interests of national security”.

This is an interesting example. This minute of 26 September 2003 is addressed to Sir Michael Jay (PS/PUS) and Jack Straw (PS). By convention minutes are addressed to the Private Secretary (PS) not the Secretary of State direct.

Among the things deleted for reasons of national security is who the minute was copied to. The copy addressees would be at the top right hand corner under the date. A friend of mine in Jack Straw’s office (remember I worked in the FCO for 21 years) tells me that the copy addressees on this and scores of other documents about me going through Jack Straw’s offce, included 10 Downing Street, MI6 and the MOD. That is why they have been deleted. As detailed in the book, the instruction to get rid of me had come to the FCO from No 10 on the instigation of the Americans.

It is fascinating to consider what else the FCO felt it necessary to blank out in this minute.

Minute of 26 September 2003 (pdf – 327KB)

Document no longer available on this site. Removed by legal action by the British Government, which acknowledged the authenticity of the document and claimed Crown Copytight over it.