Ofcom: Gaza documentary broke impartiality rules - Press Gazette

Ofcom: Gaza documentary broke impartiality rules

A current affairs programme presented by Lauren Booth, Cherie Blair’s sister, has been criticised by the broadcasting watchdog for breaching impartiality rules.

Ms Booth, 43, fronted a programme on Press TV, the Iranian international news network, about the events during and after the May interception by Israeli military forces of a pro-Palestinian aid convoy, in which nine people died.

The programme, broadcast in June, started with a pro-Palestinian song set to anti-Israeli/pro-Palestinian imagery.

Comments made by Ms Booth, who is Cherie Blair’s half-sister, included:

“Israeli commandoes … committed a massacre of innocent civilians sailing aid ships to the besieged Gaza Strip” and “this was obviously a barbarous attack on civilians”.

The broadcaster said it had complied with impartiality requirements and that the “intensity of the descriptions in the programme merely reflected the general atmosphere around the world”.

But Ofcom said “the programme did not contain any alternative views”.

It said: “Presenters or interviewers must ensure they are articulating alternative views in a duly objective manner or putting them to interviewees in a manner that achieves due impartiality.”

It said: “In summary … we considered the broadcaster did not provide sufficient evidence of alternative views within the programme.

“Overall the programme gave a one-sided view on this matter of political controversy.

“Furthermore and importantly, the broadcaster did not provide any evidence of alternative views on this issue in a series of programmes taken as a whole.”

Press TV, which launched in Britain three years ago, is funded by the Tehran government and broadcasts to nearly 10 million UK subscribers, according to reports.


9 thoughts on “Ofcom: Gaza documentary broke impartiality rules”

  1. BBC, CNN, PRESS TV, AL JAZEERA, All THe Arab and Muslim media in the world, NY times, haarez….all the liberal media is anti Israel. Leftist like you live in their own closed world and are disconnected from reality.

  2. You don’t have to be a Leftist to recognise injustice when it’s staring you in the face.
    When ‘the Chosen People’ stop building illegal settlements on Occupied land, they will find they will get a fair hearing.
    Please spare me the usual knee-jerk ‘anti-Semite’ rants that accompany any hint of criticism for Israel.
    We know you have suffered for centuries but it doesn’t give you the right to behave with impunity.

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