Hillsborough papers to be released

Until now, ministers have failed to officially support calls for

all the reports about the 1989 tragedy in which 96 Liverpool fans

died to be made public. The Government was considering whether to

release Cabinet papers should the Hillsborough Independent Panel

ask it to as this would be a highly unusual step ahead of the

30-year rule. But after an online petition gained 100,000

signatories, ministers have said they will sanction the release of

all documents the panel believe should be made public. It is

understood the panel may put forward its recommendations on which

papers should be released as early as the spring of next year. In a

statement, a Cabinet Office spokesman said: “The Government has

confirmed its commitment to full transparency about the

Hillsborough disaster through full public disclosure. “All papers

had previously been shared with the Hillsborough Independent Panel.

The Government is happy for all the papers to be released as soon

as the panel so decides, in consultation with the families. “We

expect them to be shared with the Hillsborough families first and

then to the wider public.” A spokesman said it would still appeal

against the ruling of information commissioner Christopher Graham

that the papers should now be made public as it said it wanted them

to be released in an ordered way to the victims’ families first

before the media. By reaching the milestone of 100,000 signatories,

the petition has automatically sparked a parliamentary debate.