PM under pressure to back Leveson
British prime minister David Cameron is under intense pressure to drop his opposition to legislation to back up press reforms after he faced a backlash from victims of media intrusion.
High-profile campaigners who have suffered at the hands of the press refused to meet culture secretary Maria Miller last night because they felt “too let down” by the prime minister, according to pressure group Hacked Off.
Nearly 17,000 people have signed a petition launched by the organisation calling on the three main party leaders to implement Lord Justice Leveson’s recommendations in full.
Divisions over how to deal with the findings have also ratcheted up coalition tensions. Liberal Democrats last night pledged to make sure legislation implementing the press regulation plan was drawn up “in good faith”, after Tory suggestions that a Bill was only being drafted to demonstrate that the proposals were unworkable.
Madeleine McCann’s father, Gerry, said giving evidence to the Leveson inquiry would have been “almost useless” if the proposals were not implemented in full.
London bombing hero Paul Dadge, a victim of phone hacking, said he was very disappointed with Mr Cameron’s stance and called on him to back the public rather than the press. Christopher Jefferies, the landlord wrongly arrested for the murder of Joanna Yeates, warned it would be a “disaster” if the recommendation on legislation was ignored.
Lord Justice Leveson condemned the “culture of reckless and outrageous journalism” that dominated sections of the press for decades as he unveiled the findings of his 16-month inquiry on Thursday. – (PA)