BBC condemns police raid on Australian partner broadcaster

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The BBC on Wednesday condemned overnight police raids on the headquarters of its Australian partner, public broadcaster ABC, describing it as a “deeply troubling” attack on press freedom.

“This police raid against our partners at ABC is an attack on press freedom which we at the BBC find deeply troubling,” the British broadcaster said in a statement.

“At a time when the media is becoming less free across the world, it is highly worrying if a public broadcaster is being targeted for doing its job of reporting in the public interest.”

Six police descended on ABC’s offices in Sydney armed with a warrant targeting three senior journalists and executives involved in a two-year-old investigative report.

In 2017, ABC obtained documents that showed Australian special forces had killed innocent men and children in Afghanistan. Police said the search related to the alleged publication of classified material.

A day earlier, officers raided a journalist’s home in Canberra over a report that detailed the authorities’ bid to gain powers to spy on Australian citizens communications at home. Police said there was no link between the two.

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