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Questions over Bush's knowledge of CIA interrogation

A piercing light, shone into the darkest corners of American intelligence techniques, has revealed that CIA torture carried out after 9/11 produced no results. A report for the Senate said interrogation techniques were more brutal than the agency admitted and that the CIA had misled the president, politicians and the public. There are also questions over how much George Bush knew about the what was going on at the CIA during his Presidency.

ITV News Washington Correspondent Robert Moore reports:

Major urges Blair to intervene on Chilcot disclosures

Tony Blair could intervene to ensure exchanges he had with George Bush in the run-up to the Iraq war are fully disclosed, Sir John Major has said.

Sir John Major said it was down to Labour or Mr Blair to approach the Cabinet Office and give the go-ahead for the papers to be released. Credit: PA

The Chilcot Inquiry, which is looking into the decision to go to war, has reached a deal to publish the "gists" of the two leaders' communications.

But the Conservative former prime minister urged Mr Blair and Labour to consider giving permission for full disclosure, warning that revealing only partial extracts would allow suspicions about what took place to "fester and maybe worsen".

Sir John said there were "strict rules" preventing the current Government from getting involved, but that "withholding them is going to be very embarrassing for Tony Blair, not least of course because he brought the Freedom of Information Act into law when he was in government."

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John Major: Iraq papers decision 'embarrassing' for Blair

Former Prime Minister Sir John Major has said the decision to withhold some of the correspondence about the Iraq war will be "very embarrassing" for Tony Blair.

Sir John Major told Radio 4's Today programme: “I think it is a pity the papers are going to be withheld for several reasons. Firstly, they will leave suspicions unresolved and those suspicions will fester and maybe worsen."

He also argued that the ruling ran counter to Mr Blair's actions to make government more transparent.

"And secondly, in many ways I think withholding them is going to be very embarrassing for Mr Blair, not least of course because he brought in the Freedom of Information Act into law when he was in government."

Mother of Iraq soldier 'sickened' by Chilcot decision

The mother of a 19-year-old soldier killed in Iraq has said she is "sickened" by the decision to only partially publish the correspondence between Tony Blair and George Bush in the lead-up to the war.

The Chilcot Inquiry, which is looking into the decision to go to war, has reached a deal to publish the "gists" of the two leaders' communications.

Rose Gentle, whose son Gordon was killed in 2004, said: "I feel sickened...How will the families get to know the truth? We are just shoved aside. We just feel, what's the point?"

She also claimed the former Prime Minister would "walk away" from the investigation "with a smile on his face".

Iraq inquiry 'to be published as soon possible'

The government says it is "doing everything it can" to ensure the Chilcot Inquiry is able to publish its long-awaited report into the Iraq report quickly, after a deal was finally reached to disclose the "gists" of conversations between George W Bush and Tony Blair.

Resolving this issue has taken longer than originally hoped but these are sensitive issues [...]

The Government and the Inquiry are working to ensure the Inquiry's report is published as soon as possible and the Government is doing everything it can to facilitate that.

– Cabinet Office spokesperson

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'Gists' of Bush and Blair Iraq talks to be disclosed

More than 130 records of conversations between Blair and Bush will be disclosed. Credit: Olivier Douliery/ABACA/Press Association Images

An agreement has been reached over disclosing sensitive documents detailing discussions between Tony Blair and George Bush over Iraq.

Sir Jeremy Heywood, the Government's most senior civil servant, who was principal private secretary to Mr Blair in 10 Downing Street in the run-up to the war, has agreed the principles of handing over the "gists and quotes" of correspondence between the two former leaders.

Under review will be 25 notes from Mr Blair to Mr Bush and more than 130 records of conversations between the former Prime Minister and then US president.

In a letter to Sir Jeremy, Sir John Chilcot, the head of the Iraq inquiry, said "the use of direct quotation from the documents should be the minimum necessary".

Bush: 'I'm not a fan of Mr Assad...he's made mischief'

Former President George Bush told Fox News that Barack Obama had a "tough choice to make" over Syria but he was "not a fan of Mr Assad".

He said: "The President's got a tough choice to make and if he decides to use our military he will have the greatest military ever backing him up.

"I was not a fan of Mr Assad. He's an ally of Iran and he's made mischief."

George W Bush: Snowden 'damaged security of country'

Former US President George W. Bush. Credit: Reuters/Jason Reed

The former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden has "damaged the security of the country", former US President George W. Bush has told CNN.

Mr Bush said that he believes the Obama administration "will deal" with the fallout from the Snowden case, who is now believed to be in the transit area of a Moscow airport.

He added: "I think there needs to be a balance [between security and privacy], and as the president explained, there is a proper balance".

David Miliband: 'Bush the worst thing to happen to Blair'

The former Foreign Secretary David Miliband has told ITV's The Agenda that "George Bush was the worst thing ever to happen to Tony Blair."

Tony Blair and George W Bush pictured together in 2007 Credit: Abaca/EMPICS Entertainment

Speaking a fortnight before the 10th anniversary of the start of the Iraq war, he said: "Before I became an MP I worked for Tony Blair in Downing Street and I watched him with President Clinton and I watched him go through the agony before the intervention in Kosovo, which saved a lot of lives.

"There's no question in my mind that if you compare that to the post 2001 period George Bush was the worst thing ever to happen to Tony Blair if I contrast those two relationships with one American President and with the next.

"Because the first term of the Bush administration took America and the world on a very different course than had been set in the post Cold War period."

The Agenda with Tom Bradby is on ITV at 10.35pm.

You can join in the debate on Twitter by using the hashtag #TheAgenda

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