Theresa May accused of Islamist extremism report ‘cover-up’
Theresa May has been accused of burying a report into Islamist extremism in order to protect diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia.
Yesterday it emerged that the report, which was originally commissioned by David Cameron in January 2016 and had been due to be completed by last Easter, has been in the Prime Minister’s possession for at least six months.
The Home Office said publication of the review, which was designed to examine the origins and scale of funding for UK extremist groups, was a matter for Mrs May.
The review was initially undertaken by Mr Cameron in exchange for Liberal Democrat support for extending British airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria in December 2015.
Outgoing Lib Dem leader Tim Farron however said the move to hide the report showed Downing Street was “desperate to keep Saudi Arabia happy”.
“The Government are covering up this report. It’s a scandal that this is sitting in Downing Street gathering dust. What has the prime minister got to hide?,” he said.
“I believe this report will be deeply critical of Saudi [Arabia] and that is why it is being hidden from the public. The government seems too desperate to keep Saudi Arabia happy rather than stand up to them.”
The Green party co-leader, Caroline Lucas, who pressed the Home Office and Downing Street on the issue, said the delay in publishing the report “leaves question marks over whether their decision is influenced by our diplomatic ties”.
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