Update! Sadiq Khan answers my #Assange surveillance questions with ‘Can’t tell you it’s National Security’

Earlier in the Month I send a letter to the London Assembly requesting information on the police surveillance outside the Ecuadorian Embassy. You will find my blog post here. London Assembly Member David Kurten asked questions from the London Mayor to answer. Here are the responses so far:

Q: Did the Metropolitan Police work with the CIA to monitor the Ecuadorian Embassy while Julian Assange was resident there? If so, were you aware of any collaboration between the Metropolitan Police and the CIA?
A: As this is a question on national security, the MPS can neither confirm nor deny the use of such information.

https://www.london.gov.uk/questions/2020/0141

Laser microphone in use at 18 Hans Crescent, Knightsbridge to surveill Julian Assange inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London

Q: Were you aware of a laser microphone allegedly being used by the Metropolitan Police to monitor the Ecuadorian Embassy when Julian Assange was resident? If so, to what extent was such equipment funded by the Metropolitan Police?
A: As this is a question on national security, the MPS can neither confirm nor deny the use of such information.

https://www.london.gov.uk/questions/2020/0142

21/12/2014 0utside no 18 Hans Crescent, Knightsbridge, opposite the Ecuadorian Embassy in London

Q: To what extent did the Metropolitan Police monitor supporters of Julian Assange who were present from time to time outside the Ecuadorian Embassy whilst he was resident there?
A: As this is a question on national security, the MPS can neither confirm nor deny the use of such information.

https://www.london.gov.uk/questions/2020/0143

Q: What were the total costs to the Metropolitan Police with respect to Julian Assange while he was resident in the Ecuadorian Embassy?
A: Officers are drafting a response. Please be advised that there may be some delay as the information also requires input from functional bodies.

https://www.london.gov.uk/questions/2020/0144

June 2014 Hans Crescent

Update:

I now have a further answer from Sadiq Khan in the issue of surveillance costs.

Q: What were the total costs to the Metropolitan Police with respect to Julian Assange while he was resident in the Ecuadorian Embassy?

A1: Officers are drafting a response. Please be advised that there may be some delay as the information also requires input from functional bodies.

A2: The MPS withdrew the physical presence of officers from outside the embassy on 12 October 2015. The estimated cost of policing the Equatorial Embassy between June 2012 and October 2015 was £13.2 million, of which £7.2 million was opportunity costs (police officer pay costs that would be incurred in normal duties) and £3.8 million additional costs (estimated additional police overtime as a direct result of the deployments at the embassy). Indirect costs (e.g. covering support departments and administration overheads) amounted to £2.2 million. The costs provided are an estimate based on averages, as actual salary and overtime costs would vary daily.

The MPS will neither confirm nor deny any costs following officers’ withdrawal from the Ecuadorian Embassy in 2015, as to do so would potentially identify operational tactics and capabilities.

https://www.london.gov.uk/questions/2020/0144

So here we go again a total veil of secrecy remains over what public resources have been spent in the surveillance of Julian Assange.

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