Rory Stewart is one of six candidates still in the race for Tory leader (Image: GETTY)
A Whitehall source told The Daily Telegraph Mr Stewart, whose father was second in command for MI6 for five years, was recruited after his time studying at Oxford University. The source went on to say he spent seven years as a spy before entering politics. A 2010 article in the New Yorker by Ian Parker claimed Mr Stewart worked as a spy during his time as a British diplomat in Indonesia and then in Montenegro.
Mr Stewart’s diplomat career saw him work on issues related to East Timor independence while based in the British Embassy in Jakarta before becoming British Representative to Montenegro during the Kosovo campaign at the end of the 1990s.
The source claims the International Development Secretary was put on a “fast track” to join the service but was never regarded as a high flier whilst in the role.
Mr Parker wrote it would be “frustrating” for him if he was “under a legal and moral obligation to mislead”.
Mr Stewart has long denied the reports but did acknowledge his father’s career and his own progression would give the impression he worked in intelligence and did admit the Official Secrets Act meant: “Even if you found someone who was an intelligence officer, they wouldn’t tell you they were an intelligence officer.”
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