Liam Fox has a lot of questions to answer. Several of them now centre on the “Sri Lankan Development Trust”, an organisation that paid for Liam Fox to fly to Sri Lanka on three occasions and yet:
- They give an address in Edinburgh which is home to the Canadian consulate, an All Bar One, and precious little else.
- They appear not to be registered in any form in the UK; the only registered organisation by that name ceased operations in 1999.
- We can find no record of them undertaking any activities, charitable or otherwise.
- Bell Pottinger, with whom Fox and Werrity worked on Sri Lankan issues, said they had never heard of it, although they later changed their story.
- None of our Sri Lankan contacts have ever heard of it.
Indeed it appears that paying for Liam Fox’s travel expenses is the only thing they have ever done of which there is an easily accessible public record. Clearly Liam Fox has a lot of questions to answer. But let us suppose he does answer them and that everything has a rational explanation; then Liam Fox will not have done anything improper or illegal. But how about immoral?
We know that Liam Fox and Adam Werrity had meetings with Bell Pottinger on the subject of Sri Lanka. This was during a time when Bell Pottinger was spending millions of pounds of the Sri Lankan taxpayers money on whitewashing the reputation of the brutal Rajapaksa regime.
Persuading the international community to ignore credible evidence of war crimes is a murky business – and Fox and Werrity should not be surprised that becoming embroiled in it caused their integrity to be called into question. But even if everything was above board, then they still must explain why they felt it was acceptable to collude in the spinning of mass murder at the victims’ expense.