Russia report set for publication as Chris Grayling lined up to chair new security committee

Downing Street has nominated five Conservative MPs to the nine-strong House of Commons committee set to publish a long-awaited report into alleged Russian interference in UK politics.

Former Cabinet minister Chris Grayling, who is touted to be the new chair of the powerful Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC), is on the list of nominees set to be approved by MPs next week.

He is joined by fellow Conservative former cabinet minister Theresa Villiers and other Tory MPs Sir John Hayes, Julian Lewis and Mark Pritchard.

Labour MPs Diana Johnson and Kevan Jones, SNP MP Stewart Hosie and Labour peer Lord West, the former head of the Royal Navy, are the other nominees.

MPs will be asked to approve the nominations next week via a parliamentary motion tabled by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, with the House of Lords also asked to approve the nomination of Lord West.

The approved members of the committee, which oversees UK intelligence matters, will then elect a chair, with Mr Grayling widely expected to take on the position.

They will then be expected to soon publish a report into alleged Russian interference in the UK, compiled by their predecessors on the ISC.

Critics have accused the government of sitting on the report for nine months.

Former ISC chair Dominic Grieve, the ex-Tory MP, said the report had been sent to Downing Street on 17 October and was ready for publication once it had been signed off, a process that usually takes up to 10 days.

However, the report was not released for publication by Mr Johnson before December’s general election, at which point the former members of the ISC relinquished their roles.

It has since taken almost seven months for Downing Street to nominate new ISC members and so allow for the report to be published.

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