Kimberly P. Yow

Kimberly P. Yow

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BBC editor says he ‘doesn’t regret one thing’ after false Gaza hospital reporting

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BBC’s international editor Jeremy Bowen was pressed on his initial reporting of an explosion at a hospital in Gaza on Saturday and said he didn’t regret his mistakes during an interview on the network on Saturday. 

Several media outlets initially reported that Israel was responsibile for an explosion at a hospital in Gaza. Bowen claimed during his initial reports that the Al-Ahli hospital was flattened. 

“The missile hit the hospital not long after dark. You can hear the impact. The explosion destroyed Al-Ahli Hospital. It was already damaged from a smaller attack at the weekend. The building was flattened,” Bowen said.

Bowen, during an appearance on BBC News channel’s “Behind The Stories,” said he didn’t regret his reporting and that he “didn’t race to judgment.”

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“So it broke in, I suppose, mid-evening. And to answer your question, no, I don’t regret one thing in my reporting, because I think I was measured throughout. I didn’t race to judgment,” he said. 

The BBC was also one of several news organizations, including The New York Times, the Associated Press and CNN, which rushed to report claims made by the Hamas-controlled Gaza Health Ministry.

The outlet offered a correction to the reporting on Oct. 19.

“We accept that even in this fast-moving situation it was wrong to speculate in this way about the possible causes and we apologize for this, although he did not at any point report that it was an Israeli strike,” referring to reporting from BBC senior reporter Jon Donnision. “This doesn’t represent the entirety of the BBC’s output, and anyone watching, listening to or reading our coverage can see we have set out both sides’ competing claims about the explosion, clearly showing who is saying them, and what we do or don’t know.”

Bowen was asked specifically about his claim that the hospital was “flattened.” 

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“Oh, yeah. Well, I got that wrong because I was looking at the pictures and what I could see was a square that appeared to be flaming on all sides. And there was a, you know, sort of a void in the middle. And it was, I think it was a picture taken from a drone. And so, you know, we have to piece together what we see. And I thought, well, it looks like whole buildings gone. And that was my conclusion from looking at the pictures. And I was wrong on that. But I don’t feel too bad about that,” Bowen said.

Fox News Digital has reached out to the BBC for further comment.

BBC was also criticized for refusing to label Hamas terrorists after they attacked and brutally murdered Israeli civilians. 

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The outlet updated their policy and now refers to Hamas as terrorists after it met with the Board of Deputies of British Jews.

“The BBC confirmed it was committed to continued dialogue. It also confirmed it is no longer BBC practice to call Hamas militants. Instead, the BBC describes the group as a proscribed terrorist organization by the UK government and others, or simply as Hamas,” a press release from the Board of Deputies of British Jews stated. 

Fox News’ Nikolas Lanum contributed to this report. 

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