Mail Online, the online edition of the Daily Mail, has been heavily censored by the press standards regulator for publishing an article referring to “British cities which are white-off zones”.
The title defense – that no reasonable person was likely to take the claim seriously – was rejected by the Independent Press Standards Organization (Ipso).
“The claim that there were ‘British towns which are white-off-zones” was not supported by the article. The article made no reference to one or more allegedly white-closed towns, and one only one area in a city was described as a “no-go zone” for whites, ”the organization said.
Mail Online has been ordered to publish a correction and have a link to it appear on the home page of its site.
The article – widely ridiculed when it was published in June – featured claims made in a book by former radical Islamist Ed Husain titled Among Mosques: A Journey Through Muslim Britain.
The author said he spoke to a group of white men who said they were afraid to travel to the Whalley Range area in Blackburn. Husain said he cited allegations of violence by Asian teenagers, adding that the local council was racist and would threaten people with deportation for stealing St George’s Cross.
The Mail article also included an image of Didsbury under the headline “British Towns That Are No White Zones: Muslim Author’s Study of Mosques Reveals Children ‘Attacked For Being White'” .
Nonetheless, Ipso discovered that the title only suggested that Didsbury was home to a mosque housing a Sharia court, and not that it had become a “no-white area”. Sharia councils are often accused of running a “parallel legal system” in the UK. But their decisions have no legal value under UK law and they have no enforcement power.
According to Ipso, Mail Online claimed that it “considers it” extremely unlikely that reasonable readers would have had the impression from the headline that entire cities in Britain are […] totally inaccessible to whites ”.
The committee made no decision on a second complaint that the article violated article 12 of its code, which calls on headlines to “avoid any prejudicial or derogatory reference to race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or any illness or physical or mental disability ”. He said he was unable to consider the matter because the complainant was not personally affected.