BBC Refusal to Air Gaza Appeal Sparks Uproar

Network fears appearance of bias in charged issue
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jan 25, 2009 8:00 AM CST

(Newser) – The BBC has been lambasted by politicians, religious leaders and its own staff for the network's refusal to broadcast an appeal for Gaza aid, the Guardian reports. Executives of the publicly funded network say they must adhere to a strict code of impartiality, and that airing the appeal could be seen as expressing a bias in the politically charged Mideast conflict.

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"It's absolutely essential the audience not see any evidence of bias," said a former network head. But a BBC announcer said his colleagues were “absolutely seething” about the decision. “This is not an appeal by Hamas asking for arms but by the Disasters Emergency Committee asking for relief,” said an angry archbishop of York. “By declining the request, the BBC has already taken sides and forsaken impartiality.”
(Read more BBC stories.)

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