Chilcot inquiry into Iraq war could report this year says David Cameron
PM’s comments suggest UK and US are close to settling dispute over publishing exchanges between Tony Blair and George Bush.
David Cameron said he hoped the Chilcot inquiry into the conduct of the Iraq war will publish its report by the end of the year, adding: “I think we shouldn’t have to wait much longer”.
His remarks suggest the long-running delays caused by disagreements over whether to publish classified materials including bilateral exchanges between the former prime minister Tony Blair and ex-president George W Bush are gradually being cleared up.
Cameron said it was frustrating that the report had not been published yet but he could not intervene as it was an independent inquiry.
“I want to see it published soon. My understanding is that they will be able to publish before the end of the year and I very much hope they can deliver on that timetable,” he said. “The public wants to see the answers of the inquiry and I think we shouldn’t have to wait too much longer.”
The prime minister’s comments came after Bernard Jenkin, the chair of the public administration select committee, said Francis Maude, the Cabinet Office minister, or Sir Jeremy Heywood, the cabinet secretary, may be summoned before his committee to explain the “very serious” delays to Chilcot’s publication. Jenkin complained that the report is already four years overdue.
The defence secretary, Philip Hammond, has also called for the inquiry to be published quickly even if it causes some damage to the Ministry of Defence.
- The Guardian,