08:17 GMT01 March 2021
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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.

    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.

    Related:

    Blair’s 'Illegal' War on Iraq: the Net Widens
    Wilkerson: There Was No Formal Decision by Bush to Declare War on Iraq
    UK Political Establishment Accused of Undermining Iraq War Inquiry
    Tags:
    investigation, Iraqi war, George H.W. Bush, Colin Powell, Tony Blair, Iraq, Britain, US
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