23 Jun 2009

Part of Iraq war inquiry in UK may be held in public

7:07 am on 23 June 2009

A large part of an inquiry into Britain's involvement in the Iraq war may now be held in public.

The head of the inquiry, a former top civil servant, says it is essential to hold as much of the proceedings as possible in open hearings.

Prime minister Gordon Brown announced the inquiry last week but said it would be conducted privately to protect national security and to encourage complete disclosure from witnesses.

Mr Brown now says he believes the inquiry will be able to hold some sessions in public while not compromising national security.

The inquiry is not expected to report before the next election, which is due by June 2010.