BBC apologises after ‘incorrect report’ on IDF targeting medical staff in Gaza | World News - Hindustan Times
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BBC apologises after ‘incorrect report’ on IDF targeting medical staff in Gaza

ByArya Vaishnavi
Nov 15, 2023 07:36 PM IST

‘We apologise for this error, which fell below our usual editorial standards,’ BBC said in a statement

The BBC has issued an apology over an incorrect report on Israeli forces “targeting medical staff” and “Arab speakers” during its operation at Al Shifa Hospital in Gaza. A senior BBC newsreader misinterpreted a Reuters report and said that the IDF was “targeting people including medical teams as well as Arab speakers.” The broadcaster's blunder was severely criticised by Jewish leaders, citing BBC's “staggering lack of care.” Following the backlash, BBC apologised and explained, “What we should have said is that IDF forces included medical staff and Arabic speakers for this operation.”

Protesters holding placards and Israeli flags join a gathering outside the headquarters of the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) in London on October 16, 2023, to appeal to the corporation to call Hamas 'terrorists'. (Photo by Daniel LEAL / AFP)(AFP)
Protesters holding placards and Israeli flags join a gathering outside the headquarters of the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) in London on October 16, 2023, to appeal to the corporation to call Hamas 'terrorists'. (Photo by Daniel LEAL / AFP)(AFP)

BBC apologises for ‘incorrect’ report

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In a statement shared by the BBC News Press Team on X, the channel admitted its mistake. “As BBC News covered initial reports that Israeli forces had entered Gaza's main hospital, we said that ‘medical teams and Arab speaker’ were being targeted. This was incorrect and misquoted a Reuters report,” the statement reads. It added, “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.”

Israel's satirical TV show mocks BBC

The clip of the false report was shared on social media, garnering major criticism and outrage. Following the incident, a satire show based in Israel mocked the broadcaster in a skit, which was shared on X, formerly Twitter by Chris Rose. The video clip has gained over 1.4 million views so far. The three-and-a-half-minute sketch, which was broadcast over the weekend depicted the broadcaster as intentionally misinterpreting facts to present the terror organisation in a positive light as per Haaretz.

During the skit, the Israeli TV show, Eretz Nehederet's BBC presenter said, “39 days after Hamas freedom fighters peacefully attacked Israel we have now an exclusive interview with its leader Yahya Sinwar.” However, Sinwar quipped, “There were also freedom rapists and freedom butchers.” The presenter then said, “Of course. I apologize. Mr. Sinwar, I understand you are now working toward a cease-fire.” To this, Sinwar declared, “The situation in Gaza is terrible Rachel. All innocent civilians are running out of town so we are left without protection.”

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