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Last Updated: Tuesday, 22 July, 2003, 10:54 GMT 11:54 UK
Timeline: How Kelly's name emerged
BBC News Online charts how Dr David Kelly was named as the BBC's source about Iraq intelligence.

29 May: BBC defence correspondent Andrew Gilligan tells BBC Radio 4's Today programme that a source - "one of the senior officials in charge of drawing up that dossier" - has told him that the government's dossier on Iraq, published last September, was "sexed up" against the wishes of the intelligence services.

1 June: Mr Gilligan writes in the Mail on Sunday that he met his contact at a central London hotel - later revealed to be the Charing Cross Hotel.

4 June: John Reid claims that rogue elements within British intelligence have been briefing against the government, prompting renewed calls for an inquiry into the allegations.

19 June: Mr Gilligan tells the Commons foreign affairs committee his Today programme report was based on a conversation of between 90 minutes and two hours with a British official who was a "long-standing contact".

He describes the official as "quite closely connected with the question of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction".

He says: "He was one of the senior British officials in charge of drawing up the dossier, a source of long standing well known to me."

30 June:Dr Kelly is said to have informed his line manager at the Ministry of Defence that he met Andrew Gilligan on 22 May.

The MoD said he told them that the issue of weapons of mass destruction had been discussed but that he had not claimed Alastair Campbell had "sexed up" the dossier.

8 July: The Ministry of Defence releases a statement saying an official has come forward to say he met Mr Gilligan and discussed Iraq's weapons on 22 May.

The MoD describes the meeting as "unauthorised" and the individual as an expert on weapons of mass destruction (WMD), who advised ministers and had known Mr Gilligan "for some months".

The MoD says that "with the individual's agreement", it intends "to give his name to the chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, in confidence, should they wish to interview him as part of their inquiry".

The BBC says in response: "The description of the individual contained in the statement does not match Mr Gilligan's source in some important ways.

"Mr Gilligan's source does not work in the Ministry of Defence and he has known the source for a number of years, not months."

Later, Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon writes in confidence to Gavyn Davies, BBC chairman, asking if the BBC would confirm Dr Kelly was the source.

But Mr Davies says this is "an attempt to force" the corporation to reveal its sources which would break "cardinal" journalistic principles.

9 July: Downing Street clarifies Dr Kelly's position saying he was a technical expert who had worked in a number of different areas and Departments.

He was currently working with the MoD, though his salary was being paid by another Department.

Later that evening Pam Teare, the MoD's director of news, confirms Dr Kelly's name to journalists.

How this happened is not entirely clear, but according to the Guardian, reporters from the Times, the Guardian and Financial Times were told that if they came up with a name, the government would confirm it.

According to the Guardian, one journalist offered to run through a government telephone directory to find the name, but his contact declined.

Guardian reporter Richard Norton-Taylor offered the MoD press office three names. The press office rejected the first two, but confirmed his third, David Kelly.

The Guardian says the press officer was acting under instruction from Ms Teare, who in turn was acting on behalf of Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon.

When Dr Kelly's name was published, the BBC refused to say whether or not he was Andrew Gilligan's source.

10 July: At a private meeting, the House of Commons foreign affairs committee agrees it wants to interview Dr Kelly.

15 July: Dr Kelly gives evidence to the foreign affairs committee after it reopens its inquiry. Committee members say they do not believe Dr Kelly was the source of Mr Gilligan's story and say he was badly treated by the MoD.

17 July: Mr Gilligan gives evidence again to the committee in a private session. He is later criticised for not revealing his source to MPs and accused by committee chairman Donald Anderson of changing his story. Mr Gilligan vigorously rejects the suggestion and the BBC defends his refusal to name his source.

Dr Kelly goes missing from his home.

20 July: Following the discovering of Dr Kelly's body, the BBC's director of news Richard Sambrook discloses that Dr Kelly was the source for the controversial report, after speaking to his family.




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