COBR meetings

Andrew Totten made this Freedom of Information request to Cabinet Office

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was refused by Cabinet Office.

Dear Cabinet Office,

Please could you provide a list of events that have warranted the convening of the crisis response committee known as COBR/COBRA.

The formation of COBR is usually widely reported in the media, hence I do not believe that a list of previous meetings would be sensitive information.

Yours faithfully,

Andrew Totten.

Cabinet Office

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CABINET OFFICE REFERENCE:  FOI316312

Dear ANDREW TOTTEN

Thank you for your request for information. Your request was received on 
12/3/2012 and is being dealt with under the terms of the Freedom of
Information Act 2000.

This email is just a short acknowledgement of your request.

If you have any queries about this email, please contact me. Please
remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Yours sincerely,

Knowledge and Information Management Unit

Cabinet Office

E: [1][Cabinet Office request email]
<[2]mailto:[Cabinet Office request email]>

 

 

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Cabinet Office

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Please find attached the reply to your recent FOI request

 

 

Regards

 

 

FOI Team

Cabinet Office

Room 1.35

Admiralty Arch

SW1A 2AS

E: [1][Cabinet Office request email]

 

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Dear Cabinet Office,

Thank you for your reply.

I acknowledge that 'premature disclosure of detailed information, such as COBR meetings including actual dates, duration, attendence and agendas of individual meetings would have an inhibiting effect on the frankness and candour of the assessment.'

However, I do feel it is still within the scope of the FOI act to obtain a full and complete list of past events that have triggered COBR, minus detailed information such as dates, duration, attendence and agendas.

It is in the public interest to disclose this information because it would provide a better picture of exactly what constitutes a level 2 or 3 emergency as outlined in the 'concept of operations' document, thus ensuring transparency in the mechanisms of government in response to crisis.

It is not in the public interest to withhold this information because it lacks any details that could affect future policy making in this area.

Yours faithfully,

Andrew Totten

Cabinet Office

1 Attachment

 

 

CABINET OFFICE REFERENCE:  IR316312

Dear ANDREW TOTTEN

Thank you for your recent email which we are treating as a request for an
internal review. Your request was received on 16/4/2012 and is being dealt
with under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

This email is just a short acknowledgement of your request.

If you have any queries about this email, please contact me. Please
remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Yours sincerely,

Knowledge and Information Management Unit

Cabinet Office

E: [1][Cabinet Office request email]
<[2]mailto:[Cabinet Office request email]>

 

 

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Cabinet Office

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  • Attachment

    document2012 05 11 144159.pdf

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[Subject only] Cabinet Office response - IR 316312

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Dear Mr. Smethurst,

Thank you for your review of my FOI request. You have decided to uphold the original decision because you are “satisfied that the disclosure of this information could undermine measures taken to safeguard national security and that the balance of public interest favours the application of exemptions under sections 24 (National Security) and 35 (formulation or development of policy & Ministerial communications) of the Act.”

I notice that you do not provide a reason why sections 24 and 35 apply. I remind you that a reason for declining a request is required by the FOI act. Originally the request was declined because it appeared to the responder that I was asking for sensitive information such as precise dates, duration, attendance and agendas. This is not the case.

I have now specifically stated that I am not requesting this detailed and obviously sensitive information. All I am requesting is a list of events which resulted in the convening of the committee, which is usually announced publicly anyway. I have also given a reason for this request – I believe it is in the public interest to ensure transparency in the mechanisms of government in response to crisis.

Please could you provide me with a reason why sections 24 and 35 still apply to this FOI request, or change your decision. Thank you.

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Totten