Daily Mail apologises to MEMO director, pays damages and costs

British Newspaper the Daily Mail has settled a libel claim brought by Director of Middle East Monitor (MEMO) Dr Daud Abdullah, after it wrongly accused him of advocating suicide bombings in support of the Palestinian cause.

In a retraction published today, the Daily Mail admitted that “[its] article on 17 January wrongly stated that Dr Daud Abdullah had told the BBC that he was ‘prepared to blow himself up in a suicide attack’ in support of the Palestinian cause. We are happy to clarify that Dr Abdullah did not say this and that he does not hold this view. We apologise for the error.”

The newspaper also agreed to pay Abdullah damages and cover his legal costs as part of the settlement, which was fought by London-based Carter-Ruck Solicitors. Upon news of apology and settlement, Abdullah said he “deeply appreciated” the efforts of his legal team to secure the retraction.

He continued:

This travesty was avoidable; but when people are driven by prejudice, they very often choose to ignore the facts. Sadly, this will not be last in the campaign to besmirch those who support the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people. Others will be similarly maligned.

In its original article – written by British journalist Ross Clark – the Daily Mail claimed to chart head of the British Labour party, Jeremy Corbyn’s, “long and shameful history of meetings with men of violence and opponents of democracy”. The newspaper has long been critical of Corbyn and has repeatedly attacked the Labour leader for his support of the Palestinian cause and criticism of Israel.

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