“We seek to know the results and reports of the British Armed Forces, the details of where they searched and the results of their findings. We also seek to have the details of the technology, technique or methodology used in the search and the consequential results”.
“The information falls entirely within the scope of the qualified exemption provided for at section 27 (International Relations) of the FOIA and has been withheld. Section 27 is a qualified exemption and is subject to public interest testing which means that the information requested can only be withheld if the public interest in doing so outweighs the public interest in disclosure. Section 27(1)(a), (1)(c) and (2) have been applied because some of the information has the potential to adversely affect relations with our allies. The Public Interest Test concluded that whilst release would increase public understanding and confidence in the relation the United Kingdom has with other international states in its assistance with operations, the balance of the public interest lay in withholding the information you desire. We have considered it necessary to apply the higher level of prejudice against release of the exempted information at the higher level of ‘would’ rather than ‘would be likely to’ adversely affect relations with our allies.” the letter read