200 Protest Outside British PM's Residence
01 Feb 2004, 00:40 UTC
About 200 protesters have demonstrated outside British Prime Minister Tony Blair's residence in London to demand an independent inquiry into why Britain went to war in Iraq.
Chanting anti-Blair slogans, the protesters Saturday also burned a copy of the Hutton Report - a judicial inquiry that criticized the British Broadcasting Corporation for a controversial news report about the decision to go to war.
Meanwhile, thousands of BBC employees have paid for an ad in one of London's largest newspapers in defense of former director general Greg Dyke, who quit after the release of the Hutton Report.
The full page ad in Saturday's Daily Telegraph said the BBC staff was dismayed at Mr. Dyke's resignation, but determined to maintain his vision for an independent news organization that serves the public above all else.
British Judge Lord Hutton on Wednesday said BBC journalist Andrew Gilligan's May 2003 report that Mr. Blair exaggerated the Iraqi weapons threat was unfounded. The judge cleared Prime Minister Blair's government of any wrongdoing.
Lord Hutton also called the BBC's editorial procedures "defective" and the board of governors' oversight inadequate.
The release of the report has prompted three resignations at the British media organization. The journalist at the center of the storm, Andrew Gilligan, resigned on Friday. Earlier in the week Mr. Dyke and BBC Chairman Gavyn Davies also resigned.
Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.
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