Bahai News -- Financial Times - Day 13: main points

Day 13: main points

Published: September 3 2003 5:00 | Last Updated: September 3 2003 5:00

What happened

* Professor David Hawton, director of Oxford University's Centre for Suicide Research, said the main factor behind David Kelly committing suicide was the dismay he felt at being outed by the Ministry of Defence.

* "I think as far as one can deduce the major factor was the severe loss of self-esteem resulting from his feeling that people had lost trust in him and from his dismay at being exposed to the media," Prof Hawton said.

* He also said that four parliamentary questions tabled by the MP Bernard Jenkin - and received by Mr Kelly by e-mail on the morning of his disappearance - could have been the final straw.

* Mr Kelly never opened a letter sent to him by Richard Hatfield, MoD personnel director, which discussed disciplinary action against him and which was named by Prof Hawton as one of the contributory factors to his death.

* Ruth Absalom, Mr Kelly's neighbour and the last person to see him alive, said he had appeared his "normal self" saying he felt "not too bad" as he had set off on his walk.

* The body of Mr Kelly was discovered by Louise Holmes, a voluntary dog handler, slumped against a tree with his left wrist slashed.

* Mr Kelly's family had retained hope until the last moment that he would be found unharmed, Sergeant Hugh Webb said.

* Barney Leith, the UK secretary of the Baha'i faith, of which Mr Kelly was a follower, said it did not condone suicide which it viewed as a curtailment of life. It did not, however, condemn those who took their own life.

Analysis

* The inquiry just gets worse for the government and defence secretary Geoff Hoon. Lord Hutton could find it hard to disagree with one of the world's leading suicide experts - appointed by him - that Mr Kelly's outing by the MoD was the main factor behind his death.

Who's next

* Steven Macdonald, an MoD official, will give evidence today about the alleged shredding of documents, as will one or two members of the defence intelligence staff, presumed to have doubts about the Iraq dossier. The inquiry will also hear from the toxicologist and forensic pathologist who examined Mr Kelly's body and the assistant chief constable of Thames Valley Police.

©Copyright 2003, Financial Times (UK)

Following is the URL to the original story. The site may have removed or archived this story. URL: http://news.ft.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=FT.com/StoryFT/FullStory&c=StoryFT&cid=1059479516316&p=1012571727159


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