Government won’t be releasing full Yellowhammer documents as it’ll ‘concern people’, says minister

Andrea Leadsom appears on BBC Breakfast. Photograph: BBC.

Andrea Leadsom appears on BBC Breakfast. Photograph: BBC. - Credit: Archant

A government minister has said that releasing full documents that look at the repercussions of a no-deal Brexit would 'concern people' and therefore should not be released.

Explaining why the government will ignore a demand from MPs to release the Yellowhammer documents, Andrea Leadsom appeared on BBC Breakfast to claim they were not "a prediction of anything".

She told the BBC's Dan Walker: "Yellowhammer is, as you know, the reasonable worst-case scenario. It's by no means a prediction of anything, it's simply the government looking at every possible option and ensuring we have measures in place to deal with that."

But an unimpressed presenter asked: "And shouldn't we all know that?"

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As Leadsom stuttered, she said: "I actually think it does not serve people well to see what is the worst thing that could happen. The worst thing that could happen to me is I could walk out of here and get run over. It's not a prediction, but it's something that could happen."

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But the documents nowhere explicitly refer to a "worst-case scenario", and instead contain the most likely situation of a no-deal Brexit.

She continued: "Simply putting out there all of the possible permutations of what could happen actually just serves to concern people.

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"Whereas what the government is doing, is working flat out to ensure in all circumstances, including in the event of a no-deal, that we have a small transition for the United Kingdom."

In the same interview Leadsom claimed that the British government was "one of the most transparent governments in the world" and she claimed that businesses had been "given every bit of information we can" to help them prepare for Brexit.

MPs had been given until Wednesday evening to reveal documentation surrounding Operation Yellowhammer.

A government spokesperson is alleged to have said that former Tory MP "Dominic Grieve can fuck off" for tabling the request in the Commons.

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