MI6 ‘SET TO EX­POSE FOOT’S SOVIET LINK’

The People - - NEWS FEATURES -

BRI­TAIN’S spy chiefs were so wor­ried Labour leader Michael Foot was a KGB in­for­mant they threat­ened to tell the Queen.

The sen­sa­tional al­le­ga­tion is con­tained in a new book by spy writer Ben Mac­in­tyre.

He says the Left-winger was paid £37,000 in to­day’s money by the Soviet Union’s KGB agency.

Mr Mac­in­tyre claims the cash was for spread­ing Soviet pro­pa­ganda. Bri­tish spy­mas­ters at MI6 were told in 1982 by Soviet dou­ble agent Oleg Gordievsky that the KGB were so in­ter­ested in Mr Foot they had opened a file on him and co­de­named him Agent Boot.

Gordievsky claimed the Labour leader never passed se­crets about Bri­tain but acted un­wit­tingly as an agent of in­flu­ence for Moscow.

MI6 planned to take the un­prece­dented con­sti­tu­tional move of telling the Queen if it looked like Mr Foot would be Prime Min­is­ter.

That never hap­pened be­cause Tory PM Margaret Thatcher was rid­ing high fol­low­ing vic­tory in the Falk­lands War and she eas­ily won the 1983 elec­tion.

When claims of Mr Foot’s Soviet con­nec­tions were first pub­lished 23 years ago he suc­cess­fully sued.

He said then the claims were a “big lie”. But now they can be pub­lished be­cause Mr Foot died in 2000 aged 96. Last night top Labour fig­ures rub­bished the claims.

Cur­rent leader Jeremy Cor­byn tweeted: “Smear­ing a dead man, who suc­cess­fully de­fended him­self when he was alive, is about as low as you can go.”

Neil Kin­nock, who suc­ceeded Mr Foot as Labour leader, said he had been a con­tin­ual critic of the Soviet Union.

AC­CUSED: Michael Foot

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