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Wednesday, 2 August, 2000, 07:30 GMT 08:30 UK
Humphrys rapped by BBC
John Humphrys, Today programme
John Humphrys interview with Lord Robertson was 'ill-judged'
The BBC has reprimanded veteran journalist John Humphrys after the Secretary General of Nato complained about constant interruptions during an interview.

The corporation upheld a complaint by Lord Robertson of Portellen, the former Defence Secretary, after an appearance on Radio 4's Today programme.

BBC governors found Humphrys' approach had been "inappropriate" and "ill-judged".


The tone of the questioning was inappropriate at times and the frequency of the interruption was ill-judged

BBC governors' report
Lord Robertson had said Humphrys, famous for his no-nonsense questioning style, had "not met proper BBC standards".

Humphrys had used the interview about Kosovo as a "platform for his own opinions", it was claimed, while his interjections amounted to a "critical running commentary".

As a result of the complaint the editor of the Today programme, Rod Liddle, had spoken to Humphrys about the handling of the interview.

Lord Robertson, Nato Secretary General
Lord Robertson: Critical
He made it clear that a different approach should be adopted when the subject was next covered, the BBC said.

The BBC Board of Governors gave its findings on the incident in February in its programme complaints bulletin.

The report said: "Although the premises of Mr Humphrys' questions referred to views expressed by others rather than opinions of his own, the tone of the questioning was inappropriate at times and the frequency of the interruption was ill-judged."

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