Sunday, 30 August 2009

Compare and contrast the BBC and The Telegraph

The Telegraph report that:
"Jack Straw has admitted the Government caved in to Libyan demands that the Lockerbie bomber be included in a prisoner transfer deal with Britain.

The Justice Secretary said he originally wanted Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al Megrahi omitted from the agreement, but relented and agreed the bomber should be eligible.

He said the Libyans deserved "something" in return for giving up their nuclear weapons programme but vehemently denied striking a "backdoor deal" over Megrahi. "

Meanwhile the BBC prefer to concentrate on another aspect:
"Justice Secretary Jack Straw has said reports the Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi was released over an oil deal are "wholly untrue".

He denied a "back door deal" was done to transfer Megrahi because of UK trade talks with the Libyan government.

Letters leaked to a newspaper show UK ministers agreed to include him in a prisoner transfer deal in 2007 because of "overwhelming national interests". "

So you pays your money... Well you do to the BBC, The Telegraph online is free.


Craig said...

It's looking very much, don't you think, that the BBC is attempting to spare Labour's blushes yet again?

Shaun Ley gave Jack Straw the easiest of rides this lunchtime, whereas Alex Salmond was badgered and baited by Stephen Evans (on 'Broadcasting House') this morning.

'Blame the SNP! Save Labour!' seems to be the order of the day.

Alex said...

The two are not at all incompatible. As I understand it a prisoner transfer agreement is an agreement to transfer foreign prisoners who continue to serve their sentences in their home country after transfer. This is normal practice and the agreement with Libya was simply to not exclude Magrahi from this programme.

Magrahi was actually released (not transferred) outside the terms of this agreement because he is dying of a terminal illness.

I think this is all a question of sloppy reporting.

Not a sheep said...

Alex: You may be right but it seems to me that the release of al-Megrahi was designed to minimise embarrassment to the Labour government whilst sticking to any agreement previously reached. Freeing al-Megrahi on compassionate grounds meant that he had to drop his appeal, an appeal that would have brought many uncomfortable facts to the surface.

Not a sheep said...

Craig: "Save Labour" is always the order of the day at the BBC.