Anonymous Hackers Suggest UK Institute For Statecraft Wanted $7Mln Funding From Government

Anonymous Hackers Suggest UK Institute for Statecraft Wanted $7Mln Funding From Government

Hacktivist group Anonymous suggests that the Institute for Statecraft think tank, which set up project Integrity Initiative on information campaign against Russia, wanted to secure 5.5 million pounds, or about $7 million, in funding from the UK government

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 11th February, 2019) Hacktivist group Anonymous suggests that the Institute for Statecraft think tank, which set up project Integrity Initiative on information campaign against Russia, wanted to secure 5.5 million Pounds, or about $7 million, in funding from the UK government.

Anonymous have released files, which, according to the group, are linked to the activities of the Integrity Initiative that receives its funding from the UK government, among other sources. According to the files, the project is setting up a network of offices in former USSR countries and European states.

The latest batch of files published by the hacktivists, purportedly from the Institute for Statecraft, refers to the influence campaign in the Balkans. Hackers released, among other documents, a letter, allegedly by Chris Donnelly, the head of the Institute for Statecraft, in which he proposed his methods and strategy for an influence campaign in the Balkans. The letter is dated October 15, Monday. The year is not stated, but appears to be 2018.

According to the hackers, Donnelly wrote the letter when he was preparing to ask the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office to provide the Institute for Statecraft and Edelman Intelligence consultancy with $7 million.

The document suggested that the Foreign Office had said that the initial proposal had had "too much research." Donnelly's letter lists more practical steps and the involvement of local partners.

In particular, Donnelly recommended fostering local partnerships to analyze "the specifics of governance in each country which creates the basis for vulnerabilities to interference and corrupt practices.

" He suggested that each country had a "national goal" that could be used as leverage. For Macedonia, a NATO membership was cited as an example of such a goal.

Donnelly went on to say that a strategy, "practical activities tailored to local needs" should be developed with the help of local partners.

"In Serbia, for example, we used the Club de Madrid to get the former Spanish [Minister of Defense] MOD, Narcis Serra, to act as mentor to the then MOD Boris Tadic. I brought Tadic to London via the Atlantic Treaty Association ... to expand his horizons and link him to MPs. He eventually became president," Donnelly's letter said.

Meanwhile, Edelman Intelligence could work on advertising campaigns, tv series, English language training "giving the right messages," the letter added.

Donnelly said that the church might also be useful in influence campaigns, saying that Metropolitan Emmanuel, the "Orthodox Bishop to the EU" was "engaged ... to bring leaders of all religions from Belgrade to a workshop in Vlatadon monastery in Greece ... and [we] also engaged the Catholic hierarchy via a parish and diocesan link, which gave us good local publicity and trust."

Integrity Initiative has not confirmed yet whether the documents are authentic, although it partially confirmed the authenticity of some of the previous releases.

The documents on the project were first published in November. Hacktivists suggested that the United Kingdom may have used the project to interfere in internal affairs of European countries and to wage an information campaign against Russia.

The UK Foreign Office has recognized several published documents as credible.

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