02-11-2008, 04:57 PM
Direct Action Resistance Fighter
Joined: Aug 2006
'MI6 in Paris' when Diana killed
Quote:An MI6 team was at the UK's embassy in Paris at the time of Princess Diana's death, the former ambassador has said.
Lord Jay told the inquest into her death that he did not believe it had anything to do with the car crash in the French capital that killed her.
Harrods owner Mohamed Al Fayed, whose son Dodi also died, believes MI6 was behind a plot to kill the princess.
Al Fayed lawyer Stuart Benson told the jury he was "pretty sure" the couple had got engaged days before the crash.
Lord Jay - known at the time of the crash on 31 August 1997 as Sir Michael Jay - told the High Court he had not even known Diana had been in Paris until he had been woken up with news of the crash.
He confirmed to Ian Burnett, counsel to the inquest, that the Secret Intelligence Service - better known as MI6 - and security service MI5 had been present at the embassy.
"It's to liaise with the French authorities on issues such as counter terrorism, anti-drugs work, security issues and to share intelligence on matters of foreign policy," he told the hearing.
Lord Jay said if MI6 had been involved in a major operation in Paris he would have expected to have been told.
He had not been aware of anything significant going on, he added.
Lord Jay said there was no truth in the allegation that he had ordered the princess's body to be embalmed because MI5 had wanted to cover-up that she had been pregnant by Dodi Al Fayed.
He also said the Queen's private secretary, Lord Fellowes, who it has been claimed was at the embassy to organise the murder of the princess, had not been in Paris at the time.
'Tone of voice'
Earlier, Mr Benson said he had received a brief call from Mr Al Fayed who had spoken of "very exciting news" to share later.
Mr Benson added the princess had not been named in the call as Mr Al Fayed had feared his calls were being bugged.
But his "tone of voice" had indicated he had been referring to the princess in the call from onboard Mr Al Fayed's luxury yacht, he said.
"It was singularly short and pretty much the exact words [were], 'Can't really talk over the phone, but my friend and I have very exciting news'.
"'Are you around on Monday to have lunch as it will mean lots of issues to talk about and discuss?'"
Mr Benson, a former legal advisor to Mr Al Fayed, said he had assumed this had referred to an engagement, because of the "tone of voice and voice used".
"It was clearly not a business discussion. It was something he felt he could not talk about on the phone - that was my reaction to what he said," he said.
The hearing continues.
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