“The BBC apologized this week for referring to Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and promised not to repeat ‘the mistake,’ following a complaint by four British organizations,” reports Jpost.
Arab Media Watch, Muslim Public Affairs Committee, Friends of Al-Aksa and the Institute of Islamic Political Thought sent a joint complaint to the BBC after a presenter on its Football Focus program mentioned that Jerusalem was Israel’s capital and “historic soul.”
In addition to posting a correction on the BBC website, Fraser Steel, head of editorial complaints at the BBC, wrote in a letter to the complaining NGOs:
“We of course accept that the international community does not recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and that the BBC should not describe it as such. [Presenter] Steve Boulton and other senior managers in BBC Sport told us they very much regret the mistake and apologize for it. Senior managers will try to ensure, as you suggest, that the mistake is not repeated… I’d like to add my apologies for this most regrettable, but I’m sure accidental, factual mistake. I appreciate that the status of Jerusalem is of particular concern to Palestinians, and it is important that it is not misrepresented.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev said in response:
“Jerusalem is Israel’s capital. It is the right of every sovereign state to determine which city will be its capital. If this is not accepted by everyone today, I am confident it will be in the future.”