Has the Wilson Doctrine now been broken or abandoned ?
We find it impossible to believe that there can have been any MI5 Security Service espionage investigation into the activities of the Russian Ekaterina "Katia" Zatuliveter, the former Parliamentary researcher / assistant to Mike Hancock, the Liberal Democrat MP for Portsmouth South, without any demands for telephone or email Interception or for Communications Data Traffic Analysis.
The fact that she had access to the MP's Parliamentary email and telephones, means that there is a grave danger of "collateral damage" snooping on the correspondence between the MP and his Constituents.
Given how little information the Ministry of Defence actually provides to Members of Parliament and the public, there should have been no risk of any secrets being handed over to Russian intelligence services, even in regard to his work as a member of the Commons Defence Select Committee.
This MP's constituency encompasses Portsmouth, so he may well be in supposedly private correspondence with the families of Royal Navy personnel suffering from hardship or Ministry of Defence bureaucracy, or with whistleblowers exposing incompetence within the the Navy or MoD. This is may actually be of more of interest to Russian intelligence agencies than any public, on the record, Parliamentary Questions or Select Committee on Defence questions he may have asked about the UK nuclear deterrent etc.
Prime Minister David Cameron has still not made any statement re-affirming and ideally extending the Wilson Doctrine, against the "tapping of telephones", internet connectivity etc.of Members of the House of Commons and Peers of the House of Lords.
According to this "unwritten constitution" convention, the Prime Minister David Cameron is supposed to inform the House of Commons and the public, if there have been changes to the Wilson Doctrine.
Even his control freak Labour predecessors Tony Blair and Gordon Brown reluctantly and with bad grace did so, in response to Parliamentary Questions from the then Opposition. They slowly expanded the original Wilson Doctrine to cover all electronic communications used by MPs (most of which like fax, email or mobile phones had not been invented back in 1966 when the then Labour Prime Minister promulgated the Wilson Doctrine)
It is a measure of the ongoing betrayal of our civil liberties and freedoms by the Labour party, even now that they are out of power and are pretending to have changed the incompetence, control freakery, corruption, spin and lies, which lost them the election, that they have not bothered, or perhaps have not dared, to to ask any Questions about the Wilson Doctrine.
Liberal Democrat MPs did used to ask about the Wilson Doctrine, but the likes of Norman Baker and Vince Cable are now Government Ministers and are avoiding this issue.
The new Intelligence and Security Committee cannot be trusted to investigate this matter, since despite our warnings, it now includes the authoritarian Labour apparatchik, the expenses scandal disgraced Hazel Blears, who has proven that she cannot be trusted with secret information. If a civil servant had been as lax as Hazel Blears,they could have been prosecuted under the Official Secrets Act 1989 section 8 Safeguarding of Information, not just once, but twice.
The House of Commons Standards and Privileges Committee is supposedly investigating the the latest attempts to re-open the old News of the World tabloid mobile phone voicemail "blagging" scandal, in so far as it may have affected some MPs. However, given the fact that the Police and the Crown Prosecution Service are not proceeding with any new charges, this Committee of very obscure backbench MPs, will probably dither and do nothing.
If they had any proper sense of public duty, they would be loudly demanding a re-statement of the Wilson Doctrine from the Prime Minister, in order to ensure the privacy and anonymity of communications between elected Parliamentary representatives and their Constituents, but they have so far failed to do so.
Lack of any espionage charges against Zatuliveter.
It seems unlikely that there is any hard evidence against Ekaterina Zatuliveter, since she was not arrested and held in a high security prison back in August when she was stopped at Gatwick Airport.
As an "agent of influence", she is obviously not in the same league as any number of Russian or former Soviet empire billionaires with links to the Kremlin, who have had socoal and business contacst with British politicians of all parties.
She was arrested only in early December and held for a week in the notorious, but low security, Yarl's Wood Immigration Detention Centre, before being allowed bail.
That sort of administrative detention without charge implies almost no actual hard evidence against her whatsoever
She has not been charged with Espionage or even under the Official Secrets Act or under any of the catch all Terrorism "thought crime " laws.
Tit for tat expulsion of Russian and British diplomats
However, supposedly on an unrelated matter, at almost the same time as Zatuliveter was being arrested, the British Government expelled a Russian diplomat from the Russian Embassy in London on 6th December 2010.
The Russians have taken their time and have also expelled a British diplomat from Moscow on 16th December 2010 in reprisal.
HC Deb, 21 December 2010, c165WS
Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs
Written answers and statements, 21 December 2010
William Hague (Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs; Richmond (Yorks), Conservative)
On 10 December we requested that the Russian embassy in London withdraw a member of their staff from the UK. This was in response to clear evidence of activities by the Russian intelligence services against UK interests.
Russia responded on 16 December by requesting the removal of a member of our embassy staff in Moscow. We reject any basis for this action.
Both staff members have now been withdrawn.
We remain open to a more productive relationship with Russia, as with any other country, on the basis of respect for our laws.
Both sides claim that there is no link with the Ekaterina Zatuliveter, case, but then both sides are professional liars and media spinners, so it it is hard to believe them.
6th December 2010 London Diplomatic List for the Russsian Embassy in London
London Diplomatic List published on 6th December 2010 (.pdf) lists the following Russian diplomats in London: