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ABC vindicated on Iraq War.



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MEDIA RELEASE

LINDSAY TANNER MP SHADOW MINISTER FOR COMMUNICATIONS

ABC VINDICATED ON IRAQ WAR

The ABC’s Independent Complaints Review Panel has vindicated the integrity of the ABC’s Iraq war coverage.

The Independent Panel found that there was no evidence of systemic bias in the AM Program and has dismissed three-quarters of Senator Alston’s complaints.

Specific complaints that have been upheld in some areas relate to individual words that are open to different interpretations.

The Howard Government’s pursuit of its own complaints panel ignores the fact that the ABC has the most comprehensive and independent complaints systems in the Australian media. John Howard simply wants to turn the ABC into a Liberal Party propaganda unit. That’s why he wants to appoint his own complaints panel.

The new Communications Minister, Daryl Williams, should end the Howard Government’s petty and vind i c t i v e w a r o n t h e A B C . R a t h e r than attack the ABC the new Minister might turn his mind to getting Behind the News back on air. Instead of its relentless attack on the ABC, the Howard Government should focus on ensuring that the ABC can continue to deliver high-quality program content.

October 10, 2003

For further information contact Lindsay Tanner or Peter van Vliet on (03) 9347 5000 or 0408 188 055.