UK PM must `come clean` over Murdoch ties: Labour

Cameron has also been asked to reveal "the dates, nature and content of the discussions" he had with James or Rupert Murdoch as well as ex-News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks about the deal.

London: Keeping up the heat on David Cameron, the opposition Labour on Sunday demanded that the British
Prime Minister and his party "come clean" over their dealings
with the family of media moghul Rupert Murdoch, as it sought
"full and frank" answers to questions linked to the phone
hacking scandal.

In letters to Cameron and senior ministers, Labour
sought "full and frank answers" to more than 50 questions
about the premier`s decision to hire Andy Coulson, a former
editor at the now defunct News of the World, and about Rupert
Murdoch`s takeover bid for pay-TV giant BSkyB.

The party wants to know what discussions key ministers
had with the Murdochs about their attempt to take full control
of BSkyB. The bid collapsed following intense pressure at the
height of the phone-hacking revelations.

Coulson quit as Cameron`s media chief in January and
was arrested this month for alleged phone hacking and police
bribery, which he denies. Earlier this month, Cameron defended
Coulson`s appointment, but admitted that in hindsight, hired
him was a mistake.

Cameron has also been asked to reveal "the dates,
nature and content of the discussions" he had with James or
Rupert Murdoch as well as ex-News International chief
executive Rebekah Brooks about the deal.

Shadow culture secretary Ivan Lewis said: "The signs
are that David Cameron still does not get it.

"David Cameron and George Osborne (Chancellor of the
Exchequer) treated warnings about Andy Coulson with contempt
and failed to put a proper distance between themselves and
senior News Corp executives during the consideration of the
BSkyB bid.

"A tangled web of their own making will not go away
until they and their cabinet colleagues give full and frank
answers to legitimate questions," said Lewis.

It has previously been reported that Cameron had 26
separate meetings with executives from Murdoch`s companies
since last May`s election.

Labour leader Ed Miliband had 15 meetings or social
contacts with News International executives over the same
period, while Chancellor George Osborne had 16.

Cameron, who has come under intense pressure over his
party`s associations with the Murdochs, has ordered all
ministerial meetings with media proprietors, senior editors
and executives be published.

PTI

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