Blair Heckled at Media Ethics Inquiry

Shouted 'this man should be arrested for war crimes'

By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff

Posted May 28, 2012 7:05 AM CDT

(Newser) – Former British PM Tony Blair is getting grilled today at the Leveson Inquiry about his ties to Rupert Murdoch while he was leading the country, reports Sky News. And thus far, the most dramatic moment comes compliments of a heckler, who managed to get through a secure corridor and into court and shout "this man should be arrested for war crimes." He was removed by security, notes the AP. Blair is one of many politicians who has been criticized in the course of the inquiry for his relationship with the infamous media mogul. But Blair responded by saying it is "inevitable, essential, and crucial" that journalists and politicians have close relationships, although the press' power could make that relationship "unhealthy," reports CNN.

He denied being "cozy" with Murdoch but acknowledged that "the relationship is one in which you feel this pretty intense power"—though he says Murdoch was more interested in pressuring him about political, rather than commercial or media, matters." Most accounts of Blair's testimony described him as relaxed, tanned, and confident, notes the BBC, with the Guardian saying Blair drew laughs when said he did not remember the Daily Mail calling the press a "big sloppy labrador." Murdoch told the inquiry last month that he never asked the Blair administration for any favors.

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair arrives to give evidence to the Leveson media inquiry at the High Court in London earlier today.
Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair arrives to give evidence to the Leveson media inquiry at the High Court in London earlier today.   (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
In this image from video, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair  is grilled on his relationship with the press and Rupert Murdoch at an inquiry into media ethics in London earlier today.
In this image from video, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is grilled on his relationship with the press and Rupert Murdoch at an inquiry into media ethics in London earlier today.   (AP Photo/ pool)
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