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Last Updated: Saturday, 31 December 2005, 00:23 GMT
Ashdown heads political honours
Lord Ashdown
Lord Ashdown has effectively ruled Bosnia for three years
Former Liberal Democrat leader Paddy Ashdown is among the figures from the world of politics to be named in the New Year Honours list.

Lord Ashdown - until recently the UN's High Representative in Bosnia - has become Knight Grand Cross (GCMG) of the Order of St Michael and Saint George.

Sir Richard Mottram, Downing Street's intelligence and security chief, is made GCB of the Order of Bath.

And ex-Number 10 spin doctor Anne Shevas has been appointed an OBE.

Leadership praised

Lord Ashdown, who quit as leader of the Lib Dems in 1999 after more than a decade at the helm, recently stood down as the UN's chief administrator in Bosnia after three years.

Lord Ashdown and his team have been praised for their dynamic and reforming leadership in Bosnia, which has recovered sufficiently to be considered for European Union membership.

Although the Lib Dem peer admitted in an interview this week it remained a "dysfunctional state" propped up by international peacekeeping initiatives.

Sir Richard was the top civil servant at the transport department under Stephen Byers in 2001 and became embroiled in the row over special adviser Jo Moore's email saying 11 September was a "good day to bury bad news".

At one point, in a now famous memo, Sir Richard dubbed the situation "the biggest cock-up ever".

Twin roles

He was also at the centre of a controversy in 1985, when private secretary to then Defence Secretary Michael Heseltine, giving evidence for the prosecution in the trial of Clive Ponting.

Mr Ponting was charged with breaking the Official Secrets Act - but was acquitted by the jury.

Earlier this year, Sir Richard became the first civil servant to be given the twin roles of chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee and Security and Intelligence Co-ordinator in the Cabinet Office.

The appointment made Sir Richard the nearest UK equivalent to America's homeland security chief.

Anne Shevas, former chief press officer in prime minister Tony Blair's office, is probably best known for sending the initial letter of complaint to the BBC after Andrew Gilligan's now infamous Today programme report of claims Downing Street "sexed up" an Iraq weapons dossier, which was at the centre of the 2003 Hutton inquiry.


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