Shortly after the appearance of a BBC Watch post pointing out that a June 29th BBC News website report inaccurately stated that the naval blockade on the Gaza Strip began two years earlier than is actually the case, the article was amended to include the correct date.
The article – then headlined “Israel intercepts Gaza-bound boat” but later retitled “Ex-Tunisian president on board diverted Gaza-bound boat” – originally told readers that:
“The Israeli Navy has intercepted a Gaza-bound vessel sailed by pro-Palestinian activists and diverted it to an Israeli port, the military says.
It says it acted in international waters to prevent the “intended breach of the maritime blockade” imposed since 2007 against the Hamas-run territory.”
The amended article now reads:
“Israel says it acted in international waters to prevent the “intended breach of the maritime blockade” imposed since 2009 against the Hamas-run territory.”
Changes to that article can be viewed here.
Unfortunately there is no footnote informing audiences of the change made and the continuing absence of a dedicated corrections page on the BBC News website means that readers who read the earlier version of the report remain unaware that the information they were given was inaccurate. Equally unfortunate is the fact that the amended version of the article still does not provide audiences with the background information necessary for their understanding of why the naval blockade was implemented.
Another report on the same topic appeared on the BBC Arabic website and it too misled audiences with an inaccurate date. At the time of writing, that article has not yet been corrected.