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Inquiry to probe UK press habits

posted 14 Nov 2011, 10:16 by Mpelembe   [ updated 14 Nov 2011, 10:17 ]

Lord Justice Leveson opens an inquiry into media ethics in the UK following the closure of disgraced paper 'The News of the World', saying the probe will try to understand "who guards the guardians."

UK-HACKING - The British press is used to scrutinising people and events, but as a new inquiry gets underway, the tables have turned.

Lord Leveson will be examining the culture, practices and ethics of newspapers.


"I fully consider freedom of expression, and the freedom of the press to be fundamental to our democracy. Fundamental to our way of life. But that freedom must be exercised with the rights of others in mind."

The inquiry was set up in July following revelations that the now defunct News of the World tabloid had hacked the phone of a murdered schoolgirl after she went missing.

The inquiry has already heard that other tabloids besides Rupert Murdoch's News of the World may have used similar techniques to find stories.

It comes days after James Murdoch testified to a British parliamentary committee.

The executive chairman of News International said he knew nothing about the scale of phone hacking at the tabloid.

Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, actor Hugh Grant and the parents of the missing child Madeline McCann are expected to participate in the inquiry.

Lord Justice Leveson hopes to report back by next September, with the findings possibly leading to tougher regulation of the entire UK press.

Kirsty Basset, Reuters.