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Letters made by Charles

Germany
13.05.2015
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Britain releases Prince Charles black spider letters
The British government released letters written by Prince Charles to government ministers on Wednesday following a 10-year legal battle by the Guardian newspaper.
GALLERY
London (dpa) - The letters were written in 2004 and 2005 to former prime minister Tony Blair and other members of his Labour government on topics including agriculture, Northern Ireland, Britain‘s armed forces, the environment, health services and badger-culling.
Britains Prince Charles (L) and his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, (R) arrive at St. Marys hospital in London, Britain, 23 July 2013.

In March, Britain‘s Supreme Court backed a Guardian journalist‘s appeal for disclosure of the letters, known as the black spider memos because of Charles‘s handwriting.

Most of the letters were type-written but Charles had scrawled postscripts on some of them, including the handwritten comment "I apologize for the length of this letter" on one letter to Blair.

In one letter to Blair dated September 8, 2004, Charles raised concerns over whether British troops in Iraq were adequately resourced and whether their Lynx helicopters were good enough.

"I fear that this is just one example of where our armed forces are being asked to do an extremely challenging job without the necessary resources," he wrote.

Discussing agriculture with Blair, Charles said: "I only wish that more could be done to encourage people to buy British," adding that it would be "splendid if the government could find innovative ways to give the necessary lead."

Government ministers had opposed the disclosure on privacy grounds, with Prime Minister David Cameron calling the Supreme Court‘s decision "deeply disappointing."

Scans of the 27 letters written by the heir to the throne were published online by the Cabinet Office with a few redactions, apparently to remove names.

 

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