In a dramatic development in the phone hacking scandal that’s been gripping Britain, it’s been announced that Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation will close the News of the World after this Sunday’s edition.
James Murdoch, the deputy chief operating officer of News Corp, told staff, “The News of the World is in the business of holding others to account…but it failed when it came to itself.”
The last paper will not carry any advertisements and News International says the revenue from sales will go to good causes.
This all comes after a week of ever worsening allegations against the newspaper – that a private investigator acting on its behalf had hacked into the voicemails of a missing teenager, Milly Dowler, who was later found murdered.
The phones of bereaved families who lost loved ones in the London bombings had been targeted.
And the latest – Thursday’s Daily Telegraph newspaper reported that the relatives of soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan may have had their phones hacked.
Ed Miliband is the leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party.
[Ed Miliband, Leader of the Labour Party]:
“It is clearly people power that has forced this decision – the revulsion that people have felt about what’s happened with the News of the World and indeed the decisions that advertisers were then making. But I make this point, the one person who seems to be staying in her job is the Chief Executive of News International, Rebekah Brooks who was the Editor at the time that Milly Dowler’s phone was hacked. I don’t think News International can hope to start moving on and dealing with these issues while she remains in post.”
The News of the World is a venerable title that dates back 168 years. Its last edition will be on Sunday, but this promises to be a story that will run and run.