Meeting of First Minister and the President of the Catalan Government: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

FOI reference: FOI/18/02020  
Date received:  29 July 2018
Date responded: 20 August 2018
Information requested
1. Any briefing note(s) she received in preparation for the meeting, whether from Scottish Government civil servants or other sources.
2. Any minute or note of meeting that was made by civil servants attending the meeting.
3. If not included in 2., a list of all those attending the meeting.
4. Specifically, if not included in items 2. or 3., confirmation of whether the Scottish lawyer Mr Aamer Anwar attended the meeting (as context for this request an online video taken outside Bute House that day and posted on YouTube clearly shows Mt Anwar emerging from the building and joining Mr Torra on the pavement. Should it prove necessary, you can view the video concerned at – the relevant part is at about 22 minutes).
5. if not included in any other items listed above, the reason Mr Anwar was at the meeting and what role he played in it.

I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested in Annex B and C of this letter relating to points one, two and three above. In response to points four and five, I can confirm that Mr Anwar did not attend or participate in the meeting between the First Minister and President Torra. He did however accompany the Catalan delegation to Bute House.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because exemptions under sections s.29(1)(b), s.33(1)(b) and s.38(1)(b) of FOISA applies to that information. The reasons why those exemptions apply are explained in the Annex A of this letter.
Reasons for not providing information
Exemptions under sections s.29(1)(b), s.33(1)(b) and s.38(1)(b) of FOISA apply to the information you have requested.

s. 29(1)(c): This information is exempt under section 29(1)(c) as it relates to the provision of advice by any Law Officers.

s. 33(1)(b): This information is exempt under section 33(1)(b) as its disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the commercial interests of any person. “Person” includes a public authority, company and partnership.

s. 38(1)(b): applies to a very small part of the information you have requested which has been redacted. This relates to individuals’ names. It is exempt from release because it is personal data and its release would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998.

This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

About FOI
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at FOI Responses


Please quote the FOI reference 
Central Enquiry Unit 
Email: CEU
Phone: 0300 244 4000 
The Scottish Government 
St Andrew's House 
Regent Road 
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