ABC says sorry

June 24, 2009 by Henry Benjamin
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The Australian Broadcasting Corporation has apologised for misreporting in April that Israel’s Supreme Court had ruled that the West Bank wall is illegal and should be pulled down.

Colin Rubenstein

Colin Rubenstein

Following the report by Middle East correspondent Anne Barker on AM on April 25, the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council submitted a complaint contending that the Israeli Supreme Court had never ruled the security barrier illegal.

In their submission AIJAC stated that the Supreme Court had on occasion ordered the the wall’s route be changed…but had never stated it was illegal.

ABC representative Kieran Doyle has written to AIJAC apologising for “this lapse in editorial standards”.

The online version of the story now carries an editor’s note pointing out the error and the matter has been posted on the ABC News’s correction pages. Doyle also advised AIJAC that the issue had been raised with the reporter.

In Anne Barker’s report, she stated  that “both the International Court of Justice and Israel’s Supreme Court have ruled that the West Bank wall is illegal and must be pulled down.”

Dr Colin Rubenstein, Executive Director of AIJAC, said: “We regarded this as a serious error because it suggested that the Israeli Government is showing flagrant disregard for the law of the land by building the barrier in defiance of Israel’s highest court. We are pleased that the ABC has acknowledged the inaccuracy and has taken steps to rectify it.”

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