Jewish Chronicle Apologizes for Running Gaza Aid Ad

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A Palestinian man carries boxes given to him as aid containing sanitation kits and soap at a UN school on August 15, 2014 in Gaza City.Credit: AFP

The Jewish Chronicle, a British newspaper, has apologized for running an advertisement for a charity raising funds for the crisis in Gaza.

The weekly paper said running the ad for the Disasters Emergency Committee's Gaza Crisis Appeal was "meant as a purely humanitarian gesture," BBC reported.

In response to controversy over its decision to run the ad, The Jewish Chronicle’s editor, Stephen Pollard, issued a statement Thursday explaining that the ad was not an expression of the newspaper’s editorial view, which he said is separate from its commercial operations.

“The ad was approved by the chairman of the JC, who has no involvement in editorial decisions, as an ad for humanitarian aid which nowhere makes political or partisan points,” Pollard wrote.

The ad features an image of a Palestinian child and states: “Thousands of children in Gaza … are injured, homeless and living in fear. They desperately need medical supplies, shelter, food and water right away.”

Pollard wrote that he and the newspaper “are entirely supportive of Operation Protective Edge, as our coverage has demonstrated.”

Pollard concluded his statement by writing: “Even if you profoundly disagree with the ad appearing in the paper, I hope this will go some way to explaining its presence and that it is in no way part of our editorial stance.”

After The Jewish Chronicle ran the ad by the Disaster Emergency Committee, a British umbrella organization for international aid organizations, a Facebook ad was set up calling on readers to boycott the website until it issued an apology, BBC reported.

The BBC and other British broadcasters - including Sky News, ITV, Radio Four and Channel Five - agreed to air the Disaster Emergency Committee's fund-raising appeal. In 2009, the BBC and Sky declined to broadcast a similar DEC Gaza appeal following Operation Cast Lead. The move was widely criticized.

According to ScotlandNow, the current DEC appeal raised £8 million within five days.

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