Government reverses decision branded ‘a disgrace’ by dad of Washington soldier murdered in Iraq

John Miller with a portrait of son Simon
John Miller with a portrait of son Simon
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The Government has waived a £700-plus fee the families of service personnel killed in Iraq would have had to pay for a full copy of the report into the war.

Former civil servant Sir John Chilcot’s report is due to be published on July 6 and will be 2.6million words long.

It is a disgrace, to be honest, for what they have spent and how long it has taken.

John Miller

It emerged today that the families of the 179 British personnel who died in the war would not be entitled to a free hard copy of the 12-volume report but would have to pay £767 if they want one.

Relations would only receive a free hard copy of the executive summary - which will otherwise cost £30 - and the full report would be available free online.

The news sparked anger on-line and a Number 10 spokesman said there was “no question” of families having to pay.

Military policeman Corporal Simon Miller, from Washington, was one of six Red Caps killed when a 400-strong mob descended on a police station in Majar al-Kabir in Iraq in June 2003.

His father John has campaigned for years for the truth about why the UK went to war.

Mr Miller said news that families would not be entitled to a free copy of the full report was symptomatic of the way they had been treated.

“It is a disgrace, to be honest, for what they have spent and how long it has taken,” he said.

“After the fresh inquest, all we got was CDs of the proceedings as a record of what happened over the three weeks.

“The CDs were useless, really - you did not know which witness was where and you would have to sit through the whole thing every time.

“If you wanted a written transcript, if was going to cost you over £1,000.”

He is also angry that families who have waited for seven years for the results of the Chilcot inquiry will be given little more notice of its findings than the general public.

Relations of deceased military personnel have been invited to London for the publication and will be given advance copies of the report summary.

“We are only going to see this executive summary a couple of hours earlier than Joe Bloggs,” he said.

“He could at least have waited a week to give the families a chance to digest some of it.”