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United Kingdom police launch investigation into leaked ambassador cables

13 July 2019

Metropolitan Police are now investigating the leak of Ambassador Kim Darroch's private assessments of Donald Trump and his administration, which caused a diplomatic crisis this week.

Dominic Grieve hits out Tory leadership hopeful Boris Johnson for not supporting British ambassador Sir Kim Darroch after emails critical of the Trump administration were leaked to the media.

Counterterrorism police chief Neil Basu said Friday that the leak had damaged United Kingdom global relations and there was "a clear public interest" in prosecuting the perpetrator or perpetrators.

Darroch quit after Donald Trump labelled him "stupid" and "wacky" following the leaking of the memos in which he branded the USA president's administration inept.

"The investigation will be reviewed at every stage to ensure a proportionate investigation is undertaken".

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The ambassador said his position had become "impossible" after the US President denounced him as a "very stupid guy" and a "pompous fool" on Twitter, and announced his resignation.

However he insisted his comments in a televised debate on Tuesday has been "misrepresented" and denied withholding his backing.

"I would say to the person or people who did this, the impact of what you have done is obvious". However, you are now also responsible for diverting busy detectives from undertaking their core mission.

"The publication of leaked communications, knowing the damage they have caused or are likely to cause may also be a criminal matter", the statement from Basu said. "Turn yourself in at the earliest opportunity, explain yourself and face the consequences", he said.

British lawmakers are warning that the country is at risk of turning into a "police state", as police tell media outlets not to publish leaked government documents after a row that led to the resignation of the UK's ambassador to the US.

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The president said he had been informed by his friend and golf partner, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, that, as well as calling his administration "inept", Sir Kim had said complimentary things about him.

"If I were the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, and I wanted to maintain my credibility and the credibility of my force, I would quickly distance myself from this very stupid and ill-advised statement from a junior officer who doesn't appear to understand much about press freedom", he tweeted.

Trump earlier had publicly blasted the former British diplomat after reports unveiled details of Darroch's telegrams assessing the US government and Trump's administration.

"There were lots of factors in his resignation and I would suggest President Trump's response, and the President had actually banned him, made it very hard for him to do his job".

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United Kingdom police launch investigation into leaked ambassador cables