“Inaccurate media reports” exacerbating 60 Minutes case
Nine urges caution in reportage of Lebanon ordeal, and says it is extremely limited in what it can say.
Nine has released a statement surrounding the 60 Minutes ordeal, indicating it is limited in what it can say while a legal process is underway in Lebanon.
It follows continued media coverage of the situation, including detailed Fairfax reports of communications involving Brisbane mother Sally Faulkner. Such information could be referenced in an upcoming hearing in Beirut.
Nine’s statement is as follows:
It is extremely important to stress that we are severely limited in what we can say given that matters are now part of a legal process in Lebanon.
We are cooperating fully with the Lebanese authorities and it is important to stress that we respect the laws of Lebanon and its judiciary.
Regrettably a number of inaccurate media reports are exacerbating the concern and confusion of the families of those being detained.
Media reports, including those based on inaccurate or unreliable sources, could be used in evidence and coverage of information that could not be made public if these proceedings were in front of an Australian court, could be highly prejudicial to the proceedings in Lebanon.
We urge all media to take extreme care in reporting on matters that could impact on the welfare of our crew or Sally Faulkner, especially given the issues and sensitivities involved in cases involving disputed custody.
A 60 Minutes crew was in Beirut to film and interview Ms Faulkner after she was reunited with her children.
There is understandable public interest in this story, given the alarming statistics regarding cross-border custody disputes involving parents from many different countries which a crew from 60 Minutes was seeking to highlight.
Our 60 Minutes crew are comfortable and in good health, and are being well looked after by Lebanese authorities.
We want to see our crew and Ms Faulkner return home safely as soon as possible and we are working with a respected Lebanese legal team in Beirut to secure this outcome.
We are continuing to receive tremendous support in these efforts from Australian diplomatic representatives in Lebanon, and DFAT officials in Canberra.