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London Authority employee launches UK's Venezuela Information Centre

By Aleksander Boyd

London 17.05.05 | Alan Freeman is an economist in Greater London Authority Economics, a special unit set up in 2002 to provide a firm statistical, factual and forecasting basis for policy decision-making by the GLA and its functional bodies. He is a visiting fellow of the University of Greenwich, where he lectured in Economics from 1992 until 2002. Prior to that, he has worked variously as an IT researcher, freelance programmer, technical author, trainer and journalist. Alan Freeman received his MSc in Economics from Birkbeck College in 1982 and his first degree, in Mathematics, was from University College London [1].

On April 10 2005 Alan Freeman registered, according to WHOIS [2], the site of the Venezuela Information Centre [3]. Mr Freeman appears to have acted as representative of Siebert Contracts, a private non-trading limited company involved in software consultancy & supply [4]. Freeman also seems to work, as noted above, for the Greater London Authority Economics; i.e. an office somewhat related to London's Major Ken Livingstone. Red Ken, as the Major is also known, has been involved in the past in campaigns supportive of Hugo Chavez, for let us not forget that his name was featured, alongside other notorious 'revolutionaries', in a letter penned by Tariq Ali entitled "If we were Venezuelans we would vote for Hugo Chavez" [5]. It is truly a pity that the UK lacks legislation similar to the US' Foreign Agent Registration Act that would permit to track such endeavours. Nevertheless it is quite worrying that one of her Majesty's civil servants has had no qualms in making use of his official email address to register a website to peddle propaganda in favour of Hugo Chavez. There is a history of public servants engaging in such ignoble activities; John McDonnell Member of Parliament for Hayes & Harlington [6] has a soft spot for Venezuela's coupster, one of his proposed Early Day Motions in the Houses of Parliament [7] gathered the support of 32 British MPs [8].

One has to guess what would members of the constituencies that the aforementioned MPs represent think about their activities in favour of a former army lieutenant who led a bloody coup d'etat against a democratically elected president and constantly promotes hatred and violence amongst Venezuelans. Equally interesting would be to learn the impressions of London's Mayor, Ken Livingstone, and London's Assembly members [9] in regards to official email addresses being used for such questionable purposes that have got nothing to do with tasks assigned to economist Alan Freeman. The nature of the allegations published in Freeman's website should be cause of concern for the US' Ambassador to the UK:

"There is an urgent need for us to respond to the increasing U.S. pressure on Venezuela. A smoke screen of disinformation has been created in the U.S. and in the U.K. to discredit Hugo Chavez and his government. It is essential that accurate and objective information is made available so that an informed understanding of developments in the country can be arrived at."

We are all well aware of the concept that Hugo Chavez and his international apologists have in terms of the provision of accurate and objective information...

More lies from the GLA here: What's the deal between GLA and the UK's Venezuela Information Centre?

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