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Complainant Name:
Mr Tauseef Zahid

Clauses Noted: 1

Publication: Metro


Mr Tauseef Zahid complained that the newspaper had inaccurately claimed in a headline that a girl of 8 had been used as suicide bomber. The text of the article made clear that the US army later gave her age as between 16 and 18. He was also concerned that the article referred to claims that two women with Downs syndrome had been used as human bombs in Baghdad. These had never been, in his view, corroborated.


The complaint was resolved when the newspaper which had taken the information used in the headline from an Associated Press bulletin, and included the later American position in the text of the article just before publication published the following letter from the complainant:

I am concerned about the coverage of the ongoing situation in Iraq, and that some of the press are involved in pro-war propaganda. For example, in May, Metro ran a headline about a "girl of 8" used as an alleged suicide bomber. As the article later made clear, the age of the girl subsequently accepted by the US army was 16. The headline was therefore misleading. Similarly, the article referred to two women with Down's syndrome who were allegedly used as suicide bombers in February. While the claim was widely reported at the time, I do not believe it has ever been proven. Perhaps papers like Metro should apologise to those distressed by such coverage?

Report: 77

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