Friday 6 December 2019

RTE apologises to journalist Kevin Myers for 'untrue and defamatory' claim he was a 'holocaust denier'

Journalist and author Kevin Myers. Photo: Tony Gavin
Journalist and author Kevin Myers. Photo: Tony Gavin

Allison Bray

RTE has issued an on-air apology to journalist Kevin Myers as part of an out-of-court settlement reached between himself and the State broadcaster.

Mr Myers had launched a defamation suit against RTE after it described him as a 'holocaust denier' during a broadcast on its flagship news and current affairs show 'Morning Ireland' in July, 2017.

As part of the undisclosed settlement, newsreader Bryan Dobson read out the apology just before the 9am news on Morning Ireland today.

He stated: "Morning Ireland introduced an item that suggested that Kevin Myers was a holocaust denier. This was untrue and defamatory of Mr Myer's character. Morning Ireland acknowledges that Mr Myers has, for over three decades, repeatedly testified to the scale and wickedness of Hitler's Final Solution. Morning Ireland acknowledges the damage done to Mr Myer's reputation. We regret this and unreservedly apologise."

A statement from Mr Myer's solicitor Eamonn Denieffe this afternoon said: " On behalf of our client, Mr Kevin Myers, we wish to confirm that a satisfactory settlement has been reached with RTE in relation to a broadcast on 'Morning Ireland' on July 31, 2017.

This broadcast resulted in an action for defamation against RTE which has now been settled.

This settlement includes a broadcast apology, an acknowledgment of factual errors that resulted in reputational harm to Mr Myers, the payment of damages and his legal costs.”

Mr Myers declined to comment as did RTE.

The settlement follows a ruling by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland in February, 2018 which upheld a complaint from a member of the public that RTE's depiction of Mr Myers as a holocaust denier was "unfair."

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