Russia Report released by UK Intelligence and Security Committee

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The role of the Intelligence and Security Committee is to oversee the policies, expenditure, administration and operations of MI5, MI6, GCHQ, Defence Intelligence, the Joint Intelligence Organisation, the National Security Secretariat and the Office for Security and Counter-Terrorism.

The 'Russia Report' was launched after the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury.

The report compiles the findings from an investigation into potential Russian interference into UK democracy.

Concerns have been repeatedly expressed over alleged involvement in the Brexit vote and even the 2019 General Election.

In October 2019, the completed report was passed to the Prime Minister for review but its publication was delayed due to the General Election in December. Since then, there has been much speculation on what the report contained and potential interference on the Brexit referendum. 

Today, the report was released by the ISC. You can READ THE REPORT HERE.

A committee spokesperson said:

"The Intelligence and Security Committee questions whether Government took 
its eye off the ball on Russia, finds that they underestimated the response 
required to the Russian threat and are still playing catch up. 

"Russian influence in the UK is the new normal. Successive Governments have welcomed the oligarchs and their money with open arms, providing them with a means of recycling illicit finance through the London ‘laundromat’, and connections at the highest levels with access to UK companies and political figures. 

"This has led to a growth industry of ‘enablers’ including lawyers, accountants, and estate agents who are – wittingly or unwittingly – de facto agents of the Russian state. 

"It clearly demonstrates the inherent tension between the Government’s 
prosperity agenda and the need to protect national security. While we cannot now shut the stable door, greater powers and transparency are needed urgently. 

"The UK is clearly a target for Russian disinformation. While the mechanics 
of our paper-based voting system are largely sound, we cannot be complacent about a hostile state taking deliberate action with the aim of influencing our democratic processes. 

"Yet the defence of those democratic processes has appeared something of a ‘hot potato’, with no one organisation considering itself to be in the lead, or apparently willing to conduct an assessment of such interference. This must change. 

"Social media companies must take action and remove covert hostile state material: Government must ‘name and shame’ those who fail to act. 

"We need other countries to step up with the UK and attach a cost to Putin’s actions. Salisbury must not be allowed to become the high water mark in international unity over the Russia threat. 

"A number of issues addressed in this published version of the Russia 
Report are covered in more depth in the Classified Annex. We are not able to discuss these aspects on the grounds of national security."

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Cleator Moor | Cumbria: Little Ireland: Russia Report released by UK Intelligence and Security Committee
Russia Report released by UK Intelligence and Security Committee
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Cleator Moor | Cumbria: Little Ireland
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