BBC urged to scrap BNP broadcast

BBC urged to scrap BNP broadcast , 21-May-1999
©1999 John Hunt/OutRage! London

OutRage! activists joined protests on Friday, 21st May against the BBC over its decision to give air-time to the neonazi British National Party.

Just hours before the BNP’s European election manifesto was due to be transmitted on Friday, 21st May 1999, OutRage! picketed the BBC headquarters, Broadcasting House, in central London, to demand that the BBC “pull the plug on racism and homophobia”.

At the protest –organised by the National Assembly Against Racism and the Anti-Nazi League– OutRage! placards urged the BBC to “Revoke licence to promote hatred” and “Scrap air-time for inciting violence”.

“It defies belief that, just weeks after the London nail-bombings, the BBC has given air-time to the hate-mongers of the BNP”, said John Hunt, one of the OutRage! protesters.

“These neonazis encourage the homophobia and racism behind the recent bomb blasts. The BBC should have followed the example of Channel 4 and Channel 5 in refusing to broadcast the BNP’s propaganda”, Hunt added. “The BBC claim that they are legally obliged to transmit the broadcasts, stating variously that this is because the BNP are contesting over 50 seats or because they are contesting all seats. Tellingly, they are unable to say which Act of Parliament forces them to do this, and weakly advise persistent callers to ask their Local Government Officers for details.”

To complain to the BBC, ring 08700-100 222, (calls are charged at the “national” rate) or write to: Complaints, BBC, London W12 7RJ.