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Ofcom rejects Islamic Forum complaint

    The television watchdog Ofcom has rejected complaints against an investigation into an Islamic group broadcast by Channel Four’s Dispatches earlier this year.

    The programme, presented by journalist Andrew Gilligan, looked at the Islamic Forum for Europe which it described as a “fundamentalist” group that had “secretly infiltrated” the Labour party and was “exerting influence” over Tower Hamlets Council in East London.

    In its latest bulletin, Ofcom said it had received 205 complaints variously alleging that the programme had been biased and misleading about the IFE or contributed to Islamophobia.

    But the broadcast standards body concluded: “We considered that the programme included views to both support and reject the allegations made about the IFE in the programme, and any response or opposing views to the evidence gathered was appropriately presented during the course of the programme. Given this, Ofcom considered that the programme was a legitimate investigation into the activities of the IFE.”

    While the programme had made some “controversial allegations,” these were supported by “recorded clips, or actual quotes” and there was “no evidence that viewers were materially misled,” Ofcom said.

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