Police start probe of ambassador emails 'leak'

Jeremy Hunt said he was ‘disappointed’ at Mr Johnson’s failure to support the ambassador

In the first batch, dating from 2017 to the present, Darroch said the USA administration was "diplomatically clumsy and inept" and would not likely become "substantially more normal; less dysfunctional; less unpredictable; less faction riven".

"Given the widely reported consequences of that leak I am satisfied that there has been damage caused to United Kingdom worldwide relations, and there would be clear public interest in bringing the person or people responsible to justice", Met Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said in a statement.

The London police said on Friday they have launched an investigation into the alleged leaks of the official memos that led to the resignation of the British ambassador to Washington.

A criminal probe is being carried out by the Met's counter terrorism unit, which is responsible for investigating breaches of the Official Secrets Act.

Boris Johnson yesterday admitted that the leak of diplomatic cables criticising Donald Trump were "embarrassing" but insisted that they were not a threat to national security.

The envoy also suggested the White House lacked a "day-after" strategy on what the next steps should be after withdrawing from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, as the deal was called.

But yesterday Johnson told Tory supporters that he was opposed to the prosecution of journalists if they publish any more leaked diplomatic cables from Sir Kim.

Basu said that the publication of the leaked memos, if the person who leaked knew or suspected the damage it would cause, "may be a criminal matter".

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Sir Kim stepped down as United States ambassador on Wednesday, asserting it modified into "very no longer going" for him to continue.

The Mail on Sunday, which first obtained the trove of leaked memos, has not faced any legal repercussions for its decision to publish.

Per some Whitehall sources, Sir Kim determined to resign after Mr Johnson failed to fully toughen him all thru a TV debate on Tuesday night.

"But I defend to the hilt the right of the press to publish those leaks if they receive them and judge them to be in the public interest: that is their job".

A spokesman for the newspaper said it was in the public interest and revealed "important information" on the UK's attempts to stop President Trump abandoning the Iran nuclear deal. It says that because the Iran nuclear deal was essentially seen as an Obama deal, Trump opted out of it without much regard for the consequences.

It had emerged Sir Kim the had described the US President's administration as "inept" in secret assessments for ministers, leading to Trump branding Sir Kim a "pompous fool" and banning him from the White House.

Johnson and Hunt are locked in a battle to succeed Theresa May, who resigned as prime minister after failing three times to get parliamentary approval for a withdrawal deal for Britain's exit from the European Union.

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