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News Headlines Friday August 1st 2003
HUTTON INQUIRY INTO DEATH OF BBC SOURCE OPENS
The inquiry into the death of Dr David Kelly, the BBC's source for stories alleging Iraq's weapons threat had been exaggerated, opens today.
Inquiry chairman Lord Hutton is expected to use today's session to explain how he will conduct the probe.
The Guardian today published extracts of BBC reporter Andrew Gilligan's evidence to the foreign affairs select committee during which he is said to have merely "drawn the inference" that the 45-minute deployment of weapons of mass destruction reference had been inserted by Number 10 communications director Alastair Campbell. Meanwhile, the BBC's Panorama is to investigate the BBC's handling of the story.
CHINESE REPORTERS LOST IN 'VALLEY OF DEATH'
Three Chinese reporters working on an environmental story have disappeared in China's mysterious 'Valley of Death'.
The three journalists for the City Evening News in the north-eastern city of Changchun filed their last report on July 20 from the Changbai Mountains, in which they said their compass no longer worked and they were seeing poisonous snakes.
Since then hundreds of people, including a 50-strong forest police rescue team, have been scouring the area with little luck. Locals say many people have gone missing in the vast forest.
FREEDOM OF INTERNET THREATENED, GROUP WARNS
The World Press Freedom Committee (WPFC) believes the free flow of news on the internet is at risk unless governments commit to supporting free expression and not restricting information online.
Now the umbrella group of journalists' organisations intend to use the World Summit on the Information Society in Geneva in December to call on the international community to protect freedom of information online.
WPFC claim news on the internet is easily restricted by countries such as China, Pakistan, Malaysia and Vietnam which block news sites, shut down internet cafes and arrest citizens for disseminating legitimate news.