Welsh campaigners "frustrated" by Spy Cops Inquiry
The Plaid Cymru Assembly Member , Bethan Sayed, has written a letter addressed to the Home Secretary urging the Undercover Policing Inquiry take vital steps to achieve their objectives.
The independent public inquiry was set up by then UK Government to investigate undercover police operations conducted by English and Welsh police forces since the 1960s.
It is reported that many undercover police officers had relationships with people involved in environmental and political campaigns.
A woman, who goes by the name Lisa, who wants to remain anonymous , has been personally affected by undercover police.
“In 2010, I discovered that the person that I had been in a relationship with for six years, and I believed was somebody who was close to me and I was going to share my life with, was an undercover police officer. He was put in my life to spy on me and my friends and the different environmental and social issues that we were campaigning on.”
AM Bethan Sayed said “We want them to acknowledge that this was an act of crime and that women were violated in this process. They weren’t aware that these were undercover police operatives that they’d had sexual relations with and had children in some instances.
“We want to try and raise this up the political agenda. What these women thought was happening in a relationship was not the case and this police officer had another life and another family and I see this as state-sponsored sexual abuse.”
The letter contained five points that campaigners believe are necessary steps to enable the inquiry to achieve its objectives.
These include core participants being given their files so they know what information the police have on them as well as releasing the names of the undercover officers and their supervisors.
They also suggest the inquiry be extended to Northern Ireland and Scotland and a panel created to support the Chair of the inquiry.
About twenty people, including campaigners and Assembly Members, gathered outside the Senedd at 12pm today to pledge their support. Nine Assembly Members signed the letter.
Campaigners say they hope the letter will encourage the Undercover Police Inquiry to speed up its process and release its report as soon as possible.