Whistleblower reveals Boris Johnson gave order to evacuate Pen Farthing animals

Ben Shread / Cabinet Office

Whistleblower reveals Prime Minister Boris Johnson gave the order to evacuate Pen Farthing animals from Afghanistan. A second whistleblower has come forward.

A senior official at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) is the second whistleblower to come forward over the Afghanistan evacuations. Josie Stewart has revealed that it was “widespread knowledge” that the evacuation decision “came from the prime minister”.

Raphael Marshall previously blew the whistle on the issue and said that it was the PM who made the decision on Nowzad. According to The Independent, Ms Stewart has claimed that the foreign affairs select committee has been lied to by civil servants.

Ms Stewart commented: “I have tried to imagine but cannot conceive of any way this could have been an honest mistake.”

She went on to state: “I feel a strong sense of moral injury for having been part of something so badly managed and so focused on managing reputational risk and political fallout rather than the actual crisis and associated human tragedy.

“I saw messages to this effect on Microsoft Teams, I heard it discussed in the crisis centre including by senior civil servants, and I was copied on numerous emails which clearly suggested this and which no-one, including Nigel Casey acting as ‘Crisis Gold’, challenged.”

Ms Stewart speaking to the committee reportedly explained: “From what I heard and saw, Nowzad staff were included as a late addition only in response to this ‘PM decision’. This occurred against the previous judgment of officials.”

She went on to add: “I do not find it credible that Philip Barton, or those who drafted his letter dated January 17 2022, would not have been aware of this.”

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Alex Glenn

Originally from the UK, Alex is based in Almeria and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]