Jewish Staff File Complaint Against BBC Over Israel Coverage: REPORT

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Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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At least 22 staffers at BBC News filed a complaint against their employer over its coverage of the Israel-Hamas war, its workplace culture and social media practices, The Jewish Chronicle reported.

Multiple employees said they are “unhappy” and described how many Jewish people “believe … [the BBC] are antisemitic,” according to The Jewish Chronicle. The group has reportedly accused BBC management of responding to this criticism with “indifference.”

Many expressed concern regarding how BBC News managed “Match of the Day” host Gary Lineker’s posts on social media related to Israel, according to the outlet. He had previously been suspended for comparing the U.K.’s asylum policy to Nazi Germany, claiming the writing of the policy was “not dissimilar to that used by Germany in the 30s,” The Associated Press reported. The host had shared a tweet by an account which allegedly called for the Jewish state to be banned from international soccer tournaments and another of an interview by the Guardian’s Owen Jones of Raz Segal, where he claimed Israel participated in “genocidal killing,” The Jewish Chronicle reported.

Lineker said he believed the post referred to Israel having been banned from the event, according to The Jewish Chronicle. He has reportedly further stated he does not see criticisms of Israel as being antisemitic. (RELATED: ‘F*** Jews’: Antisemites Vandalize Office Of Media Outlet Run By Prominent Jewish Writer) 

“I don’t see it as a Jewish thing. I see it as the Israeli government… one atrocity does not deserve 80 atrocities. Or more,” Lineker told the Guardian, according to The Jewish Chronicle. He reportedly added in the interview that Jewish friends had requested him “to try to support Israel on Twitter, to back what they’re doing. I had to say, ‘What?! Look, absolutely no. And nor should you.’”

Danny Cohen, the former director of BBC television, said the organization was “willfully blind to issues of bias and antisemitism within the corporation,” according to The Jewish Chronicle.

A BBC spokesperson reportedly stated they considered the happiness of staffers “paramount” and would address any concerns brought forth to them.

“The welfare of our staff is paramount and we have well-established and robust processes in place to handle any issues, concerns or complaints raised with us, along with a range of support available to anyone who may need it,” the spokesperson said, according to The Jewish Chronicle.

The network created “safe spaces for Arab, Jewish, Israeli and Palestinian staff members” in order “to offer peer support,” according to the outlet.