LONDON – A British cabinet minister who said Israel “had shown the world” how to
deal with terrorism while maintaining democracy and who had alleged links to
Uzbekistan-born Israeli “oligarch” Michael Cherney has resigned from the
According to the government, Baroness Pauline Neville-Jones,
minister of state for security and counter- terrorism, stepped down at her own
request in order to work with private industry.
Speaking in 2008,
following a trip to Israel, she said that Britain could learn from Israel on how
to handle terrorist threats.
A former head of the UK’s joint intelligence
committee, Neville-Jones last year threatened to resign when her appointment to
a key cabinet position was blocked after M15 revealed her links to Cherney and
another Russian “oligarch,” Dimitry Firtash The UK’s domestic
counterintelligence and security agency said in a briefing sent to Prime
Minister David Cameron that she had connections to the two billionaires with
alleged links to organized crime and a Russian mafia leader, the Daily Mail
According to a source quoted by the newspaper, “MI5
sent a summary of the intelligence on Neville-Jones’s financial associations
with the two oligarchs. Based on that submission and on a separate briefing by
his political advisers, Cameron decided not to appoint her.”
Neville-Jones was given the more junior position as minister of state at the
Home Office, in charge of security and counter-terrorism.
was said to have infuriated the former career diplomat, whose career spanned
more than 30 years serving in an array of locations including Washington and
Prime Minister Cameron last week praised her for helping to ensure
the balance between security and liberty and for drawing up the original plans
for the National Security Council.