» Thursday, March 30, 2006

Wilson Doctrine

Put that throughout the debate about security issues in recent years, the Government had made repeatedly the point that the key thing was to listen to what the security professionals had said, and to take their advice very seriously, but the Prime Minister had decided in this case not to take the advice of the Interception Communications Commissioner who had very clearly advised that the Wilson doctrine should be changed so that MPs were treated just like any other citizen of this country, so why had the Prime Minister decided that MPs should be treated differently, the PMOS said that the Prime Minister considered very, very carefully the advice from Swinton Thomas as people would expect.

Today, he was fulfilling the commitment he made in September to inform Parliament of the outcome at the earliest possible opportunity. What was important to recognise was that this was a decision which had to be considered seriously at all sorts of levels, and the Government and the Prime Minister had gone through a very detailed process of consultation. The decision today was the result of that detailed consultation process. The issues involved were difficult, and everybody accepted that, but the decision today was the result of a very detailed consultation process amongst all the relevant people.

Asked if that meant that Sinn Fein no longer needed to sweep their buildings and cars, the PMOS said nice try! Although he was thousands of miles away, he still maintained the practice of not commenting on individual MPs, and that remained the case.

Briefing took place at 6:00 | Search for related news

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