UK conservatives to outline press plans

12.02.2013 - 11:21

The ruling Conservative Party in the UK is to outline its belated response to the Levenson inquiry into press standards, but is not expected to call for its full implementation.

The Levenson inquiry was established in the wake of a series of press and media scandals involving phone-tapping and other invasive investigative techniques. The inquiry report, published in November 2012, recommended the press be governed by an independent, self-regulating body underpinned by legislation.

The opposition Labour Party, as well as government coalition partners, the Liberal Democrats, are behind the recommendations.

According to media reports, the conservatives are instead likely to set out plans for a new system of press regulation backed by a royal charter, a formal document that governs institutions such as the Bank of England.

The announcement comes as cross-party talks on the issue, which began in December, continue to drag-on. A series of high-profile court cases, involving big money settlements, from wronged individuals against various newspapers, are also continuing.

Prime Minister David Cameron met with high-profile campaign group Hacked Off on 11 February.

Speaking after the meeting, the group’s spokesman, Brian Cathcart, said that he received no strong assurances that the Conservative position would be fully compliant with the terms of the Leveson report.

David Cameron has said that full implantation of the report’s findings is not necessary, claiming that legislation of the industry amounts to a restriction on press freedom.