REVEALED: Chief magistrate in Assange case received financial benefits from secretive partner organisations of UK Foreign Office
The senior judge overseeing the extradition proceedings of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange received financial benefits from two partner organisations of the British Foreign Office before her appointment, it can be revealed.
by Matt Kennard and Mark Curtis
Part 3 - In Istanbul
The month following the Tertulias forum, in November 2014, Lady Arbuthnot went on another trip with her husband, this time to Istanbul for the British-Turkish Tatlidil, which paid the Arbuthnots £2,426 for flights and expenses.
Lord Arbuthnot described the purpose of the visit as “to promote and further bilateral relations between Britain and Turkey at a high level”. Tatlidil, which means “sweet talk” in Turkish, was established in 2011 by then prime minister David Cameron and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. It describes its objectives as “facilitating and strengthen [sic] relations between the Republic of Turkey and the United Kingdom at the level of government, diplomacy, business, academia and media”.
The UK delegation to the 2014 meeting in Istanbul was led by Prince Andrew, who also hosted the Tatlidil in Edinburgh the previous year. Then foreign minister Tobias Ellwood spoke at the forum while former foreign secretary Jack Straw, who is a co-chair of Tatlidil, presided over one of the discussions. Erdoğan spoke at the meeting and reportedly called for the removal of Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad.
The sparse information available on the meeting, which largely comes from social media, suggests that Lady Arbuthnot may not have attended the discussions since there was a separate “spouses/partners programme” involving local visits.