Coroner to examine UK bid to keep Litvinenko details secret

LONDON Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:57am EST

A man looks at a portrait of ex-spy Andrei Litvinenko by Russian artists Dmitry Vrubel and Viktoria Timofeyeva in the Marat Guelman gallery in Moscow May 22, 2007. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin

A man looks at a portrait of ex-spy Andrei Litvinenko by Russian artists Dmitry Vrubel and Viktoria Timofeyeva in the Marat Guelman gallery in Moscow May 22, 2007.

Credit: Reuters/Sergei Karpukhin

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LONDON (Reuters) - A British coroner said on Wednesday he would consider in secret sensitive information which the British government does not want made public about the death of former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko, who was murdered in London in 2006.

Litvinenko, who had been granted British citizenship and had become a vocal critic of Russian leader Vladimir Putin, died after someone slipped polonium-210, a rare radioactive isotope, into his cup of tea at a plush London hotel.

At a pre-inquest hearing on Tuesday, lawyers for the British government argued information it held should be subject to a public interest immunity certificate, preventing disclosure which they said would seriously harm national security.

The lawyer for Litvinenko's family argued Britain was trying to hide details of his work for its MI6 intelligence service, and material which showed Russia was behind his death, because London wanted to protect lucrative Russian trade deals.

The coroner, High Court judge Robert Owen, ruled he would go ahead with considering the government's request in private, but said he would only allow material to be kept secret where that served the public interest better than disclosure.

(Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Alison Williams)

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Comments (1)
DeanMJackson wrote:
The article reads, “The lawyer for Litvinenko’s family argued Britain was trying to hide details of his work for its MI6 intelligence service, and material which showed Russia was behind his death, because London wanted to protect lucrative Russian trade deals.”

Firstly, who didn’t know Litvinenko was “working” for MI6; it was assumed. Secondly, if London were trying to protect lucrative trade deals, then Russia would never have been implicated in his death in the first place.

What London is attempting to hide is the fact that Litvinenko was killed by British Security forces. Why? Because Litvinenko was a double agent and London didn’t want to act anymore on the misinformation he was providing, or supply sensitive information to him when requested. You see, if Litvinenko asked for certain information he should have, but was denied it, then he and Moscow Central would know that London knew Litvinenko was a double agent.

Also, Litvinenko never did reveal that the “collapse” of the USSR was a strategic ruse under the “Long-Range Policy” (LRP), the “new” and more subtle strategy all Communist nations signed onto in 1960 to defeat the West with. By failing to alert the West to the Communists’ “new” strategy (as KGB defector Major Anatoliy Golitsyn did, using his inside knowledge to amazingly predict arcane moves made by the USSR/East Bloc), Litvinenko proved his being a double agent.

How do we know the British Security Services killed Litvinenko? Simple, in his last hour he was sweating Polonium, which London’s radiation detectors on land and in orbit would have detected, immediately dispatching London Fire Brigade hazardous materials teams to his apartment door. By the time Alexander Litvinenko got home at approximately 6:20 PM (he is said to have been poisoned at 5 PM) he was profusely sweating polonium, as evidenced by the taxi he took (The taxi was so contaminated with polonium, it could not be used again).

Feb 27, 2013 7:02pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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