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Last Updated: Friday, 16 November 2007, 13:21 GMT
EastEnders violence prompts anger
Scene from the EastEnders raid
The sequence will be re-edited for Sunday's repeat
Violent scenes in a recent edition of the BBC One soap opera EastEnders have prompted 663 complaints.

The scenes, broadcast on 13 November, showed a gang of thugs carrying out an attack in The Queen Victoria pub.

The BBC said it was "very careful" to make sure the violence was "implied rather than explicit", but Sunday's omnibus edition would now be re-edited.

A line in the same episode about the Hillsborough tragedy prompted 380 complaints and the BBC has apologised.

'Highly distasteful'

During the show car mechanic Minty said: "Five years out of Europe because of Heysel, because they penned you lot in to stop you fighting on the pitch and then what did we end up with? Hillsborough."

One viewer who complained said: "I think the comments made about the Heysel and Hillsborough stadium disasters were irrelevant to the show.

"I think it was highly distasteful as it had no context whatsoever."

A total of 96 fans died at Hillsborough at the start of the FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest on 15 April 1989.

Scene from the EastEnders raid
The script for this episode was carefully prepared and filmed, and we took great care to signal the nature of the content to the audience
BBC spokeswoman

A BBC spokeswoman said Minty had actually been "reminding" another character that football hooliganism at Heysel "led directly to the fencing in of fans at football matches".

She added that he pointed out there had been "tragic consequences" for the innocent spectators at Hillsborough.

Despite apologising to viewers who may have "misinterpreted" the line, the BBC said it would remain in Sunday's repeat.

However, producers have agreed to edit the opening sequences of the pub raid because "the audience mix for Sunday afternoon can be different".

The spokeswoman insisted the story was in line with the BBC editorial guidelines for pre-watershed viewing and the script was "carefully prepared and filmed".

Media regulator Ofcom also received 177 complaints. A spokeswoman said the watchdog was currently "considering" them.



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