Condign: Commentary


To download the full report from the MoD web site menu (32 seperate files, 247 Mb), click HERE (pops up in a new window)


The British Government have long denied they have carried out any secret study of the UFO phenomenon. But they were wrong.

Between 1996 and 2000 the Ministry of Defence paid a security-cleared expert working for the Defence Intelligence Staff (DIS) to carry out a study and draw up a secret report on the potential threat posed to the UK by “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena” – UFOs.

The report asserts “that UAP exist is indisputable...[they] clearly can exhibit aerodynamic characteristics well beyond those of any known aircraft or missile – either manned or unmanned.” But the study attempts to explain the phenomena and assesses the security risk they may pose to the UK – including potential hazards to air traffic.

Dr David Clarke of Sheffield Hallam University and colleague Gary Anthony have obtained a copy of the 4 volume, 460 page study – formerly classified SECRET - using the Freedom of Information Act.

The British MoD have collected reports of unidentified objects in the sky for half a century. In 2001 the MoD released the report of the “Flying Saucer Working Party” that was used to brief Winston Churchill in 1952. Since that time the Ministry claimed it had never carried out any study to determine what UFOs actually were.

But in December 1996 work began in great secrecy on the construction of a computerised database of UFO reports. The project was entrusted to a defence contractor working from offices in Whitehall. The expert, whose identity remains a mystery, told the Ministry he wished to keep a “low profile” because of potential embarrassment to the Government if his work was revealed to the public.

His detailed study of the phenomenon – codenamed Project Condign – was completed in March 2000. The report – Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAPs) in the UK Air Defence Region - was classified secret to restrict its circulation and ensure it was not made public at the time. It was copied to three senior MoD and Royal Air Force officials at director level and then filed away. Ministers and the officials who ran the so-called “UFO desk” in Whitehall were not shown the conclusions.

Dr David Clarke, senior lecturer in journalism at Sheffield Hallam University, learned of the existence of the study in January 2005. Dr Clarke and Gary Anthony made a request using the FOI in September that year. The report was released by the MoD in April 2006 and its conclusions are revealed exclusively on this website.

Read the Executive Summary of the report’s findings and find more about the contents and background by browsing the contents page under “CONDIGN”

The MoD plans to make all four volumes of the report available via their Freedom of Information Publication Scheme. Keep watching this site for more news!


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