Secret Blair-Bush Memo Unlikely to Set Back UK Iraq War Probe Release

© AFP 2022 / Saul LoebUS President George W. Bush presents the Presidential Medal of Freedom to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair (L) in the East Room of the White House in Washington. (File)
US President George W. Bush presents the Presidential Medal of Freedom to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair (L) in the East Room of the White House in Washington. (File) - Sputnik International
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The delayed Chilcot inquiry into the United Kingdom’s role in the US-led Iraq War is unlikely to be further postponed by revelations alleging former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s advance support for the war, local media reported Sunday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Former US State Secretary Colin Powell’s 2002 memo to former US President George W. Bush revealed Blair continued "to stand by" Bush as he prepared to invade Iraq the following year.

The Guardian cited an inquiry spokesman saying Sir John Chilcot will not comment on the correspondence "so as not to prejudice or pre-empt the report."

The newspaper further cited Chilcot’s promise last week to provide a timetable for publication of the 2009 inquiry by November 3.

Former US President George W. Bush smiles alongside former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. - Sputnik International
Secret Data Reveals Blair, Bush Plotted Iraq War Year Before Invasion
The delayed publication of the Chilcot Inquiry, detailing Britain’s role in the 2003 Iraq War, has led to widespread public and media outcry. The official reason is the "Maxwellisation" process, giving those named in the report time to prepare for and respond to allegations made in it prior to its release.

The leaked memo was in sharp contrast with Blair’s public stance on the invasion in Iraq, as he was telling his voters the country was not proposing any military action.

The United Kingdom was part of a US-led coalition that invaded Iraq in 2003, without a UN mandate, after falsely accusing former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein of possessing weapons of mass destruction.

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