WIKILEAKS PRESS RELEASE: “Big Trouble in Little Paradise: the Turks and Caicos Islands takeover”

19 July, 2009 Updated 20 July, 2009

WikiLeaks has released the *redacted* (see below) Turks & Caicos corruption report which was removed hours after its release by the TCI Comission of Inquiry on Saturday.

By comparing this document to the *unredacted* version we released on Sunday morning, what was concealed is revealed in precice detail.

WikiLeaks has released a suppressed report laying at the center of UK plans to seize direct control of the Turks & Caicos Islands, a popular Caribbean tourist destination and tax haven.

A British warship on patrol in the Caribbean sea, the HMS Iron Duke, is expected to support the takeover once the report is released.[1]

Following corruption allegations last year made against the Islands’ political elite, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) commissioned Sir Robin Auld to head up a Turks & Caicos Islands Commission of Inquiry.

Come March this year, and the release of an interim report, the Commission found itself in court, with the release of the full findings injuncted.

As a conclusion to that action, yesterday, the Commission briefly released on its website what it called its Redacted Final Report[2]. According to the Commission’s accompanying press release, the Governor’s redaction results from the direction of the Hon Chief Justice Gordon Ward in the current litigation between Mario Hoffmann and Cem Kinay against the Governor and me (and an assurance given by the Hon Attorney General in proceedings brought by Jak Civre).

Yet only hours later, the 266 page report was removed.

WikiLeaks has obtained the full report-and restored the redacted text.

Included in the redactions are the findings relating to ex-Premier Misick, Hall and Hanchell.

Based on the report there does appear to be genuine grounds for the corruption allegations. Yet it is not clear that the Turks & Caicos Islands is an exceptional case. Many British protectorates have corrupt leadership, which means that the FCO can pick and choose its interventions at whim, something that corrupt but assertive leadership in British protectorates such as Bermuda must be noting with alarm.

Whether the leaders of such former colonies choose to stop looting their countries or choose to placate the U.K. government in other ways remains to be seen, but it is clear which way the incentives lay.

Source document:

* Turks and Caicos Islands Commission of Inquiry into grand corruption, Final Report, unredacted, 18 Jul 2009:



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24 Hours in Gaza By Soozy Duncan

18 July, 2009 — Viva Palestina

Allowed only 24 hours in Gaza under threat of not being allowed to return to Egypt, the Viva Palestina convoy has been a whirlwind of activity since crossing the border at Rafah Wednesday night.  Organizers have attempted to compress 3 days of planned activities into a single day.

Thursday started by watching a press conference featuring Gazan Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh with members of the Neturei Karta, an organization of anti-Zionist Rabbis from Munsey, New York, who traveled with the caravan.  Haniyeh emphasized that the government and the people of Gaza take no issue with Jews, but rather with Zionism and the ongoing oppression and blockade by Israel.  Rabbi Dovid Weissman concurred that Jews, Christians and Muslims had coexisted peacefully in Muslim countries for centuries prior to the birth of Zionism, and asked for the people of Gaza to join him in praying for the peaceful dismantlement of the state of Israel.

The group then drove around the Gaza Strip in buses to see the aftermath of the bombing onslaught 6 months ago before attending another press conference at the Legislative Assembly and traveling to Shafa Hospital in Gaza City to deliver the medical aid which was brought from the United States and gathered in Cairo.  Finally, delegates met with families of some of the 11,000 prisoners being held in Israel at the Ministry of Prisoners in Tel Alhwa, where children of parents killed in December and January also addressed the group.

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