Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and the current Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne testified in London before a British panel examining the relationships between politicians and the press. Brown discussed his relationship with Rupert Murdoch and denied ever saying that he was going to “declare war on Rupert Murdoch” following News International’s decision to support the Conservative Party.
He later addressed the issue of privacy and said he never gave permission for The Sun newspaper to print a story about his son’s medical condition.
British Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne also appeared before the panel examining the relationships between politicians and the press. The Chancellor is one of many senior government officials testifying before the Leveson Inquiry this week. The Chancellor answered questions about his meetings and conversations with Rupert and James Murdoch and other media executives. He was also asked to provide more details about what led to the decision to hire Andy Coulson, Prime Minister Cameron’s communications director. Mr. Coulson was the former editor of the “News of the World” – the now-defunct tabloid at the center of the British phone hacking scandal.
The Leveson Inquiry will also hear this week from former British Prime Minister John Major, Opposition Leader Ed Miliband and on Thursday, current British Prime Minister David Cameron.
Prime Minister David Cameron appointed Lord Justice Leveson to oversee a committee examining the relationship between the press and celebrities, politicians and the police. More than 250 witnesses have testified before the inquiry, including including former British PM Tony Blair, actor Hugh Grant, and James & Rupert Murdoch.
The "News of the World" paper, owned by Rupert Murdoch's News International, has admitted to hacking the phones of celebrities, politicians and victims of crime in the U.K. and folded last year.
The end goal of the inquiry is to make recommendations on the future of press regulation and governance.