Gordon Brown says Litvinenko murder 'ordered from the top'

时间:2019-09-08 责任编辑:贺侪 来源:兴发娱乐平台 点击:261 次

The murder of was “ordered from the top”, Gordon Brown writes in a new book, adding that his government was aware of another assassination attempt planned by the Kremlin on British soil.

Recalling his time as prime minister, Brown says his “immediate problem” with arose from the Litvinenko case. “We were clear that the assassination had been ordered from the top … and what was clear was that further assassinations on British soil were possible,” he writes. “Indeed, we believed that one new assassination was being planned. This led to the diplomatic standoff that has characterised our relations with Russia ever since.”

Litvinenko was poisoned in November 2006 with a cup of radioactive tea in a Mayfair hotel. Days after becoming prime minister in June 2007, when Moscow refused to extradite one of Litvinenko’s killers, Andrei Lugovoi.

Brown from the Russian embassy in protest. Moscow responded with tit-for-tat expulsions. Brown writes that he agreed with a public inquiry held last year by Sir Robert Owen which concluded that Putin and his spy chief had Litvinenko’s murder with polonium.

In July 2007, Scotland Yard arrested a Chechen allegedly sent to London to kill Boris Berezovsky. It is unclear if Berezovsky was the target of the second assassination plot Brown refers to. Berezovsky – a bitter critic of Putin’s – was found dead in 2013 at his ex-wife’s Berkshire mansion. A coroner recorded an on his death.

Brown makes the comments in his new book , written to coincide with the EU referendum campaign and which explores Britain’s post-war relationship with the EU, as well as making a strong case for Britain’s continuing membership.

Part of the book covers his period as prime minister. Putin was prime minister during most of Brown’s period in office with Dmitry Medvedev Russia’s titular president. Brown writes: “Putin left it in no doubt that he was in charge. I particularly remember the G8 meeting [in Japan] in 2008. After we thought we had secured a common G8 position on Zimbabwe, Russian president Medvedev’s acquiescence was immediately overruled by prime minister Putin.”

The book also includes a vivid description of the moment when he was chancellor and told the Treasury’s assessment had concluded Britain should not join the euro.

Brown writes: “‘We can’t join the euro? Is that what you said?’ Tony Blair said to me in 2003.

“‘We can’t join the euro,’ I said.

“‘We can’t join the euro? Is that what you said?’ Tony repeated.

“‘Yes, I said we can’t join the euro,’ I told him.

“‘You can’t say that,’ he replied. ‘But the evidence is clear,’ I argued, ‘it just won’t work for us.’”

Brown says the press claimed his opposition to joining the euro was influenced by personal ambition, but that in fact his motivation was simple: “I saw detailed – what I believed irrefutable – evidence which confirmed our economy was out of sync with that of the rest of and was likely to stay out of sync for some time.”

In his book Brown also reveals that relatively recently he took a DNA test to learn more about his family history and discovered that his ancestors originally came from Sweden. “Almost certainly [the DNA test showed] my ancestors had travelled by sea from Sweden to England in search of prosperity and the evidence suggests they left Sweden around the 9th or 10th centuries.”

Brown also says that, according to a story passed down the generations in his family, some of his ancestors used to live on the Borders but fled to Scotland and changed their name at a time when cattle raiders were being driven out of the area.

Brown says the discovery of his “migrant roots” and “European roots” made him appreciate how “almost all our families, at some stage, have been migrants”.