Corbyn urged to clarify stance on press freedom

Paul Linford, Hold the Front Pag

Jeremy Corbyn has been urged to clarify his position on press freedom in the UK after appearing to deliver a veiled threat to the industry.
The Labour leader last week hit back at recent national newspaper coverage of alleged meetings with a former Czech spy during the 1980s.

In a video statement Mr Corbyn said: “A free press is essential for democracy and we don’t want to close it down.”

But in what was seen as an attack on the press barons he added: “We’ve got news for them, change is coming.”

Now the Society of Editors has called on Mr Corbyn to clarify what plans his party has to control the media if it wins power.

Executive Director Ian Murray said: “The Society of Editors does not align itself with any political party nor stance, however we do stand for a free press, a self-regulated press, and we are concerned that in his statement Mr Corbyn appears to be suggesting Labour have plans to change the media landscape in the UK.

“If that is the case then we would ask him to clarify what those proposed changes are and to urge him to resist any temptation to attempt to silence voices that may be opposed to his point of view through press restrictions.”

“The media in the UK is rightly held up as a beacon of freedom throughout the world, particularly in those countries where politicians and rulers close down any voices of opposition to their power.

“While we are pleased to note that Mr Corbyn recognises the role of a free press in a free society, he has also announced that Labour does have plans to change the media landscape in some way.

“The Society calls on Mr Corbyn to explain what changes his party has in mind so that these can be openly debated.”
uploaded: Tue, Feb 27 2018
modified: Tue, Dec 30 1969