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U.K. news network Sky News has apologized to its viewers after showing a glimpse of the latest cover of French satire weekly Charlie Hebdo, the first issue to come out following the deadly attack on its offices, featuring a caricature of the Prophet Muhammad.
The network, part of pay TV giant Sky, in which Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox owns a 39 percent stake, showed the glimpse during a live interview with Charlie Hebdo writer Caroline Fourest. She was interviewed via satellite in a segment for the news channel, in which she expressed her disappointment that most media outlets in the U.K. had chosen not to show the cover.
“I’m very sad, very sad that journalists in the U.K. do not support us, that journalists in the U.K. betray what journalism is about by thinking that people cannot be grown enough to decide if a drawing is offending or not,” she said.
When Fourest reached for a copy of the magazine, the camera quickly panned upwards, and the network cut back to the studio. The camera ended up briefly showing the top part of the cover.
“We at Sky News have chosen not to show that cover, so we’d it appreciate it, Caroline, not showing that,” the host said. “I do apologize for any any of our viewers who may have been offended by that,” she added.
Last week, an old Charlie Hebdo cover featuring a cartoon of the prophet Muhammad appeared on the BBC in some library footage, prompting debate over the public broadcaster’s guidelines that reportedly banned all representation of the prophet. However, the BBC later issued a statement saying that the guidelines were being updated, while a spokesman told The Hollywood Reporter that the guidance was old and had appeared on its website in error. “The guidance is not within the BBC’s main editorial guidelines,” the broadcaster added.
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