Call Us: +44 (0)1323 410810

The BBC does listen

 The BBC does listen

It seems that it is worth communicating with BBC News when they make a mistake.

On 3rd May their news website published an article titled: ‘Trump tells Abbas `very good chance` of Mid-East peace deal.’ That article reported on the meeting held between Donald Trump and Mahmoud Abbas at the White House that day.

Screenshot of article headline

But to the surprise of anyone familiar with the situation in the Middle East, the article quoted Donald Trump as saying

‘there would be no lasting peace unless both nations found a way to stop incitement of violence.’

The phrase ‘both nations’ clearly referred to Israel and the Palestinians, and there lay the surprise. There has been no evidence in recent years of Israeli leaders inciting their people to violence, whereas there has been much evidence of the Palestinian leaders doing so.

It was therefore extremely unlikely that Donald Trump said such a thing; and the White House statement on the meeting confirmed that he actually said ‘the Palestinian leaders’ should speak in a unified voice against incitement to violence.

Consequently a complaint was submitted to the BBC, and they eventually acknowledged the error, correcting it and adding the following note:

Correction 16 May 2017: In his remarks on 3 May, Donald Trump said Palestinian leaders,
rather than Palestinian and Israeli leaders as reported in an earlier version of this story,
should speak out against incitement to violence.

What is most troubling about this is not the delay of almost two weeks in correcting such a significant error, but that a large news organisation like the BBC could have made such a mistake in the first place.