- Hillary Clinton attacks Boris Johnson over his refusal to publish a report on suspected Russian interference in UK election.
- The report was due for publication before the upcoming general election.
- However, Johnson blocked its publication amid reported fears it could cost him the election.
- Clinton called Johnson’s decision to suppress the report “shameful.”
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Hillary Clinton has attacked Prime Minister Boris Johnson for his “inexplicable and shameful” move to block publication of a report into Russian interference in UK elections.
The former US presidential candidate told the BBC’s Emma Barnett that she was “dumbfounded” by the UK government’s refusal to publish the report, which was intended for publication before the general election.
The UK Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee sent Prime Minister Johnson its report weeks ago.
However, the government is refusing to publish it until after the general election on December 12.
“Every person who votes in this country deserves to see that report before your election happens,” Clinton said.
She added: “Because there is no doubt – we know it in our country, we have seen it in Europe, we have seen it here – that Russia, in particular, is determined to try to shape the politics of western democracies.
“Not to our benefit, but to theirs.”
She told the BBC: “I find it inexplicable that your government will not release a government report about Russian influence. Inexplicable and shameful.”
Clinton added that the Kremlin would seek to interfere in future elections in the West.
“So there’s no doubt of the role that Russia played in our [US] 2016 election and is continuing to play.
“I would hate to see that happen here [UK.] Whatever the outcome. I don’t know what’s in it, [the report] any more than anybody else does.
“But certainly, people who are about to vote in a month or so deserve to know what is in a report that one has to speculate, must have something of concern, otherwise why wouldn’t it be publicly disclosed?”
Reacting to Clinton’s remarks, Chuka Umunna, the Liberal Democrats foreign affairs spokesperson, said the UK government’s refusal to publish the report “implies there is something to hide” and said “Boris Johnson is morphing into Donald Trump more and more, day by day.”
Johnson is under increasing pressure over Tory links to Russia
The prime minister is facing growing scrutiny over his Conservative party’s ties to Russian donors and their associates.
Nine Russian donors to the party were named in the report which the UK government is yet to publish, it emerged over the weekend.
The report identified close links between these donors to the Conservative party and the Russian government.
Among those donors named in the suppressed report are Alexander Temerko, who worked for the Russian defence ministry and has previously boasted that the prime minister is his “friend”.
Temerko donated more than £1.2m to the Conservatives over the past seven years.
Other Russian donors to the Conservative party include Lubov Chernukhin, who is married to Vladimir Chernukhin, a former ally of Putin.
Chernukhin previously paid £160,000 for a tennis match with Johnson and former prime minister David Cameron and has donated more than £450,000 in the past year.
An investigation by Open Democracy last week found that the Conservative Party received at least £498,850, or about $US642,000, from Russian business executives and their associates between November 2018 and last month.
This was a significant increase from the previous year when such donations amounted to less than £350,000.
The increase came despite increased pressure on the party to cut its ties to Russian oligarchs since the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury last year.
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