The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has been caught describing Iraqi refugee and convicted terrorist Ahmed Hassan as a “Surrey teenager” for a second time.
The broadcaster, funded by the British public through a state-enforced compulsory license fee, provided the dubious description in a breaking news tweet on its BBC South-East account, after Hassan was sentenced for carrying out a terror bombing on a London tube train.
“BREAKING ‘Dangerous and devious’ Surrey teenager jailed for life for Parsons Green Tube bombing, in which 51 people injured’, read the social media post — earning a string of incredulous responses from users who felt the broadcaster was attempting to obscure Hassan’s origins as a supposed alleged ‘child refugee’.
(Sentencing judge Charles Haddon-Cave suggested he may have been older than he claimed.)
“He is not a Surrey teenager. Not in any serious manner of speaking. He is an Iraqi, and a terrorist, an Islamist terrorist at that.”
BREAKING "Dangerous and devious" Surrey teenager jailed for life for Parsons Green Tube bombing, in which 51 people injured https://t.co/Fv4T9dKbNL
— BBC South East (@bbcsoutheast) March 23, 2018
This was not the first time the BBC had implied the migrant is a Surrey native, however.
A tweet from BBC London Newsroom described Hassan as “the #Surrey teenager accused of building and placing a homemade bomb on a train which partially exploded at #ParsonsGreen tube station” in January.
It is also not quite true that Hassan was “jailed for life”.
He did, in fact, receive a 34-year minimum term — almost ten years less than far-right extremist Darren Osborne, who targeted Muslims in Finsbury Park — rather than a whole-life tariff, although the BBC does clarify this in the article their tweet links to.
Hassan was allowed to stay in Britain after illegally immigrating via Calais, France, despite telling the authorities he had been “trained to kill” by the Islamic State — a revelation which has caused public outcry, given right-wing activists and journalists such as Martin Sellner, Brittany Pettibone, Lauren Southern, and Lutz Bachmann are being detained and deported at the border for much less.
The Iraqi was “determined to create as much death and carnage [on the day of his attack] as possible,” according to Judge Haddon-Cave.