Sky News Apologises After Guest Shows Charlie Hebdo Cover On Air
The news channel cut away from an interview with a contributor to the satirical French newspaper after she held up its latest cover. "I do apologise for [sic] any of our viewers who may have been offended," said the presenter.
Sky News guest Caroline Fourest was cut off by the news channel on Wednesday night after attempting to hold up the latest copy of Charlie Hebdo on live television.
Fourest is a contributor to the satirical newspaper, which was the subject of a bloody terrorist attack last week. She was complaining about the British media when she held up its latest cover, which features a cartoon of the Prophet Muhammed.
Before having a chance to hold up the magazine she was taken off air.
Presenter Dharshini David immediately apologised for viewers, stating it was company policy not to show the cover of the new issue of Charlie Hebdo, before moving on to the next item.
While BuzzFeed News and many other online outlets have republished the latest cover of the newspaper, much of the traditional British media has chosen not to print or broadcast the image.
This is the full transcript of the key moment:
Caroline Fourest: "I am very sad that journalists in the UK do not support us, that journalists in the UK betray what journalism is about by thinking that people cannot be grown enough to decide if a drawing is offensive of not. Because you're not even showing it.
"It's this which is completely crazy, that in UK you cannot show as simple drawing as that, with Muhammed...."
[Camera pans out to avoid showing cartoon, audio is cut.]
Dharshini David: "...I am afraid here at Sky News we have chosen not to show that cover so we would appreciate it, Caroline, not showing that. I do apologise for [sic] any of our viewers who may have been offended. As you know, here at Sky News we have taken the editorial decision not to show the cover of Charlie Hebdo."
At the end of the item producers cut to Adam Boulton, the former political editor of Sky News.
Following the show, Boulton retweeted multiple messages attacking his own station's decision to censor the cover, while also linking to video of the incident.
Even Rupert Murdoch, who controls Sky News' parent company, got involved.
On Tuesday, Sky News told BuzzFeed News it had no intention of showing the cover but would continue to give the story "extensive coverage".
Sky News has given extensive coverage to this story and to the highly controversial issues surrounding it, which have been debated on TV and across our other platforms on numerous occasions over the last few days.
As with any controversial story, the issue of publication of the cartoons has been subject to rigorous editorial scrutiny and discussions – which will continue. Currently, Sky News will not be broadcasting these images on any of its platforms.