A BBC interviewee resurfaces as source of inaccurate news-agency report

Our colleagues Tamar Sternthal and Gidon Shaviv recently prompted corrections to an article produced by Associated Press.

“”They (Israelis) are trying to uproot us from Jerusalem, they are stealing the houses, the trees and the stones of the city,” laments Nura Sub-Laban, a Palestinian woman featured in The Associated Press article today by Karin Laub and Mohammed Daraghmeh (“Palestinian eviction case spotlights Jerusalem settler push“).

Set against the backdrop of the disputed “gold-topped Dome of the Rock,” AP’s account of the looming eviction of Sub-Laban from their home in Jerusalem’s Muslim Quarter reflects a narrative of supposed Jewish encroachment in the holy city at the expense of dispossessed Palestinians, blameless “victims of discriminatory use of Israeli property law.” 

It is also fundamentally wrong, based as it is on a grossly misrepresented basic facts about the Sub-Laban case, initially ignoring critical essential information and falsely casting it as part “of a wider settlement campaign.””World Service

The main source of the inaccurate information originally appearing in that AP report is one Ahmed Sub-Laban and if the name rings a bell for BBC Watchers, that is probably because the partisan testimonies of that employee (and others) of the foreign-funded political NGO ‘Ir Amim’ have also been used by the BBC in the past – but without the necessary “summarising” of his “standpoint” demanded by BBC editorial guidelines on impartiality.

As this AP story clearly shows, transparency concerning the affiliations of NGO employees used as sources or interviewees and accurate presentation of the political agenda of such sources of information is paramount if the BBC is to be able to claim that the news it provides to its audiences is impartial. 

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