FDA says politicians should have protected Sir Kim Darroch

The FDA has criticised UK politicians for failing to protect British Ambassador to the US, Sir Kim Darroch, who resigned today.

Sir Kim was attacked on Twitter by US president Donald Trump after series of leaked emails emerged where the ambassador had called his administration “clumsy and inept”. Trump responded by calling him a “stupid guy”, and refused to work with him.

FDA general secretary Dave Penman said: “Sir Kim Darroch has been placed in an impossible situation, firstly by the leaking of confidential communiques and then by the failure of Boris Johnson and his supporters to provide unequivocal support. As a loyal public servant, he has, as he always did, put his country first. Can we honestly say that about those who took to the airways and equivocated?

“Johnson and his allies have sent the clearest signal possible to Sir Kim, the diplomatic corps, the wider civil service and, unfortunately, to foreign governments: that civil servants’ professional, impartial advice is needed, but they are ultimately expendable if it proves politically expedient.

“We are witnessing a disturbing pattern emerge, where the brightest and best civil servants are being forced out of their jobs due to relentless attacks from politicians and some sections of the media — escalating to death threats and threats against their families in some instances.

“It is the job of ministers and indeed the Prime Minister to defend their civil servants from this kind of abuse. But time and time again, they are choosing to stay silent and as a result they have created an environment where the targeting of individuals or undermining of the service as a whole has become routine.”

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