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BBC Issues Apology for Misreporting Israel-Hamas Conflict: False Claims of IDF Targeting Medical Staff

November 16, 2023

Photo Credit: Yahoo News

 

The BBC has apologized after a news anchor misreported a Reuters news story to suggest the Israeli army was “targeting” medical staff.

The BBC newsreader, believed to be Monica Miller, a senior broadcast journalist and BBC anchor based in Singapore, was reading from a Reuters report when she twice stated the Israeli military was “targeting people including medical teams as well as Arab speakers” in Gaza’s Al Shifa hospital.

 

In fact, the Reuters report clearly stated the medical teams and Arabic speakers were part of the Israeli Defense Forces who had been sent into the hospital to assist patients and staff. Reuters quoted an IDF spokesperson who told the news agency: “Our medical teams and Arabic speaking soldiers are on the ground to ensure that these supplies reach those in need.”

The BBC subsequently posted a correction on its website and broadcast an on-air apology, which was delivered by another newsreader.

“As BBC News covered initial reports that Israeli forces had entered Gaza’s main hospital, we said that ‘medical teams and Arab speakers’ were being targeted,” the BBC said on its “Corrections and Clarifications” page online. “This was incorrect and misquoted a Reuters report. We should have said IDF forces included medical teams and Arabic speakers for this operation. We apologise for this error, which fell below our usual editorial standards. The correct version of events was broadcast minutes later and we apologised for the mistake on air later in the morning.”

Earlier, the Board of Deputies, an organization representing mainstream British Jewry, said it was “appalled” by Miller’s on-air misreporting. “At best this shows a staggering lack of care when reporting on a highly volatile situation, which can have a knock-on effect all over the world, including in Britain, where antisemitic attacks have risen by more than 500% since Oct. 7,” the org said. “Incidents like this make a mockery of the BBC’s oft-stated dedication to professionalism and impartiality.”

The BBC did not respond by publication time when asked whether Miller would face any internal repercussions over the error.

Last month the BBC admitted another of its reporters, Jon Donnison, had been “wrong” to “speculate” while reporting on a rocket attack on the Al-Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza. Donnison immediately suggested on air the rocket had been fired by Israel, musing: “it’s hard to see what else it could be.” Both Israeli and U.S. sources later confirmed the rocket had been launched by Palestinian Islamic Jihad from Gaza but had misfired and fallen onto the hospital carpark.

 

Culled from  Variety/Yahoo News

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