Sir John Chilcot Delivers The Iraq Inquiry Report

Sir John Chilcot has released his long-awaited report on the UK involvement in the Iraq war, which has led to more than 500,000 civilian deaths in the country.

Sir John said the UK government “chose to join the invasion of Iraq before the peaceful options of disarmament had been exhausted” and “military action at that time was not a last resort”.

Prime minister David Cameron tells MPs that the report is not “accusing anyone of deliberate explicit deceit” while Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour leader, formally apologises on behalf of the Labour Party for taking the country to war.

Former Prime Minister Tony Blair said he stood by his decision to back an invasion and that the report “should lay to rest allegations of bad faith, lies or deceit.”

Key findings

  • Blair committed to an invasion almost eight months before receiving parliamentary and legal backing

  • The invasion was based on “flawed intelligence and assessments” that went unchallenged

  • The UK was “undermining” the UN Security Council’s authority in the absence of majority support for military action.

  • The inquiry did not express a view on whether military action was legal but concluded “the circumstances in which it was decided that there was a legal basis for UK military action were far from satisfactory”.

 

EU referendum

The UK political fallout from the historic vote to leave the EU is gathering pace, with the Labour shadow cabinet disintegrating and key Conservative figures preparing for a leadership contest.

In Berlin, the German chancellor Angela Merkel has attempted to rein in pressure from within Europe to force Britain quickly to trigger divorce proceedings with the EU, saying that rushing into an exit was unwarranted.

Key things to watch

  • UK political establishment in upheaval after Brexit vote

  • Mass resignations from Labour shadow cabinet

  • Michael Gove to back Boris Johnson for Tory leadership

  • First minister suggests Scotland could block Brexit legislation

  • Asset managers prepare to move staff out of London

 

MAS_Cameron_Grab

Vist the current political and market fallout live blog

The UK has voted to leave the EU after a bitter and divisive campaign.

Prime Minister David Cameron has said he will resign by the time of the Conservative party conference in October.

Boris Johnson has said that the British people “have spoken up for democracy”. The EU was “a noble idea for its time,” he said. “It is no longer
right for this country.”.

Financial markets across the world are down sharply. Sterling has plummeted and banking stocks are taking a heavy beating in early trading.

Bank of England govenor Mark Carney has said they “will not hesitate to take any additional measures” to ensure monetary and financial stability.

First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon has she will begin to prepare the legislation for a new vote on Scottish independence

Key points

  • It is a Leave victory – see our interactive results page
  • Most of the country has turned against the EU with only London, Scotland and Northern Ireland delivering big wins for Remain.
  • Turnout was 72.%, with 16,141,241 cast in favour of Remain and 17,410,742 in favour of Leave
  • Prime Minister David Cameron has said he will resign and that the new PM should be the one to decide when to trigger Article 50.
  • The financial markets are in turmoil, sterling has fallen dramatically and volatility is hitting other major currencies. The Euro is suffering its worst day ever against the dollar. Banking stocks are particularly hard hit.
  • The Bank of England has said it will “take all necessary steps to meet its responsibilities for monetary and financial stability.” Both the BoE and the ECB has said it is ready to provide additional liquidity if needed
  • Leave campaigners Boris Johnson and Michael Gove have said informal negotiations will now start on the exit.
  • Nicola Sturgeon confirms preparations for a new Scottish independence referendum