BBC Denies Spouting Government's Qaeda Line

By Ambreen Ali,  Newser User
Posted Aug 27, 2008 7:26 PM CDT
A BBC program discussing al-Qaeda's waning influence among Muslims echoes a leaked government propaganda report, the Guardian reports.   (AP Photo/)
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(Newser) – Similarities between a leaked British government document and a recent BBC report on al-Qaeda’s waning support are just that, the broadcaster said today in denying its editorial independence had been dented. A report leaked to the Guardian talked of pushing material through UK media channels to suggest al-Qaeda is weakening; the BBC show suggested the group was losing support, but could still attack the West.

"There is absolutely no truth in any implication that the BBC compromised editorial independence," a BBC spokesman said today. He added that the show was commissioned some time ago and takes a broad look at the terrorist organization. Two key figures used to paint the case that the terror group is fading are also highlighted in the government’s report, the Guardian notes.