go to content
Politics

Sky News Article Calling Corbyn "Jihadi Jez" Taken Down Following Petition

Nearly 50,000 people signed a petition to make Sky News remove the article from its website.

Posted on

An article which called Jeremy Corbyn "Jihadi Jez" has disappeared from the Sky News website following a petition signed by nearly 50,000 people.

The article, which was published on Friday afternoon, quoted an anonymous source who called Corbyn "Jihadi Jez" after the Labour leader said it would have been better if ISIS terrorist Mohammed Emwazi – known as "Jihadi John" – had been arrested rather than reportedly killed in a drone strike.

The headline provoked anger, particularly in the hours after the article was published when news of the Paris terrorist attacks spread, and the petition, which called on Sky News to remove and apologise for the article, was signed by tens of thousands over the course of the weekend.

The petition reads: "To equate the Labour leader with a terrorist who zealously murdered innocent people is not just an insult to Jeremy Corbyn, but it is an insult to all of Emwazi's victims, some of whom have expressed similar sentiments regarding a preference for trial, as those articulated by Jeremy Corbyn.

"We demand Sky News remove this disgusting tasteless headline instantly, followed by an apology for the frivolous and disgraceful use of the term jihadi in this way."

Sky News sources told BuzzFeed News they felt the article by correspondent Jon Craig was balanced and fair, but decided to remove the story following the events in Paris which happened after the article was published.

Chelley Ryan, who set up the petition, said she was "chuffed" the article is no longer online and thanked those who shared and signed it.

"I'm thrilled that Sky have listened to us," she told BuzzFeed News. "Obviously I'd love it if they apologised but I can't see that happening. It definitely shows that people power works. I know a lot of people were cancelling their subscriptions over it so that probably played a role, but the petition definitely raised awareness. So yes, overall I'm chuffed."

The article, which asked whether the characterisation of Corbyn was fair, is still available to read on Google's cache.

Like BuzzFeed UK Politics on Facebook

Jamie Ross is a Scotland reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Edinburgh.

Contact Jamie Ross at jamie.ross@buzzfeed.com.

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.