Classified UK defense documents found at bus stop in England.
Classified documents from Britain’s Ministry of Defense containing details about a British warship and Russia’s possible reaction to its passage through the Black Sea were found at a bus stop in southern England, the BBC reported Sunday.
The BBC said the documents, nearly 50 pages in total, were found “in a soggy heap behind a bus stop in Kent early Tuesday morning” by a member of the public, who wanted to remain anonymous.
The Defense Ministry said it had been informed last week of “an incident in which a citizen recovered sensitive defense documents.” “The department takes information security very seriously and an investigation has been launched.
The employee in question reported the loss at that time. It would be inappropriate to comment further, “said a spokesman. Britain’s main opposition party, the Labor Party, said the discovery of the documents by a member of the public was” as embarrassing as it is concerning to ministers. ”
Labor defense policy chief John Healey said ministers must confirm that national security has not been undermined and security operations have not been affected and that “procedures are in place to ensure that nothing like this happens again.”.
The BBC reported that the documents, which included emails and PowerPoint presentations, were related to the British warship Defender, which this month sailed through the waters of the Crimean peninsula, a region that Moscow annexed to Ukraine in 2014.
Russia said Wednesday it had fired warning shots. and dropped bombs in the ship’s path to drive it out of what the Kremlin says are its territorial waters, but which Britain and most of the world say belongs to Ukraine. He later summoned the British ambassador to Moscow for a formal diplomatic reprimand for what he described as a provocation. Britain rejected Russia’s account of the incident.
He said he believed the shooting was a previously announced Russian “artillery exercise”, and that no bombs had been dropped. It confirmed that the destroyer had sailed through what it said were Ukrainian waters, describing its path as an “innocent passage” under international law of the sea.
The BBC said the documents suggested the ship’s mission was carried out with the expectation that Russia could respond aggressively.
“What do we understand about the possible ‘welcome party’ …?” asked an official from the Permanent Joint Headquarters (PJHQ), the UK’s three-service headquarters in Northwood, according to the BBC.