Monday, August 04, 2008

[The Hankyoreh, June 28 2008] Investigation into MBC program raises questions about press freedoms

Media insiders say MBC report should be handled within the media community, not by the prosecution

The prosecution has formed a special five-member team to investigate whether national broadcaster MBC intentionally misled the public about mad cow disease on its program “The Producer’s Notebook,” which aired nationwide on April 29. The prosecution’s investigation, which came at the behest of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food, Forestry and Fisheries, has sparked controversy for its unprecedented suppression of the press.

The prosecution announced on June 26 that it has decided to organize a task force of five prosecutors to clarify the truth surrounding the incident as soon as possible, saying that the TV program has generated a great deal of public interest.


This is the first time the prosecution has formed a task force to investigate a program. Even with the Hwang Woo-suk affair in 2005, the prosecution conducted an investigation, but formed a task force only after Seoul National University announced the results of its investigation into Hwang, a SNU scientist who was found to have fabricated research on cloning human embryonic stem cells.

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