Home Affairs Committee Report on Counter-Terrorism: Oversight of the Intelligence Agencies

Description: “The oversight of the security and intelligence agencies has long been a matter of concern for this Committee. In reports in 1992 and again in 1997[161] we have recommended that the security service (which is nominally under the purview of the Home Secretary although its head reports directly to the Prime Minister) ought to be subject to scrutiny from the Home Affairs Committee. We have consistently been denied the opportunity to take evidence from senior officials who work in the national security structure and we are highly unimpressed that we had to summon the independent Intelligence Services Commissioner in order to take evidence from him. For information we have attached an analysis on the UK and US systems of oversight of the security and intelligence agencies which examines the plaudits and criticisms of each system (found at Annex B). We believe that the current oversight is not fit for purpose for several reasons which we set out below.”

Report

Author(s): Home Affairs Committee