ABC federal politics reporter Nour Haydar resigns over broadcaster’s coverage of Israel-Gaza conflict

A high-profile political journalist in ABC’s Parliament House bureau has resigned over the national broadcaster’s coverage of the Israel-Hamas conflict.

Nour Haydar, who joined the ABC as a cadet in 2017 before rising to the ranks as a political reporter in Canberra in 2019, has featured prominently across the broadcaster’s online, radio and TV channels – even hosting Afternoon Briefing and appearing on its flagship breakfast TV program.

Ms Haydar, 35, who is of Lebanese heritage, resigned from her position in the Parliament House bureau on Thursday.

She told Nine Entertainment on Friday the decision followed scrutiny from staff at the ABC over the coverage of the conflict in the Gaza Strip, along with its treatment of culturally-diverse staff.

She said: “I have resigned from the ABC. This was not a decision that I made lightly, but one I made with total clarity.

“Commitment to diversity in the media cannot be skin deep. Culturally diverse staff should be respected and supported even when they challenge the status quo.

“Death and destruction on the scale we have seen over recent months has made me reassess my priorities.”

In a statement on Friday, an ABC spokesperson said: “The ABC News workforce and journalism is the most representative it has ever been, and we’re continuing to progress. Including a range of voices and perspectives makes our journalism better and more accurate.

“The Israel-Gaza conflict is a complex and difficulty story to cover and we understand and care about the particular personal and professional challenges it involves for journalists.

“The ABC is committed to accuracy, impartiality and fairness in our Israel-Gaza coverage, as in all our reporting.

“The ABC constantly strives to support and defend ABC employees and their work, internally and externally.”

The move follows a difficult week for the national broadcaster after sacked radio presenter Antoinette Lattouf accused them of racism and discriminating against people on Thursday.

Ms Lattouf, who was dropped from her role in December, has since lodged an unfair dismissal claim with the Fair Work Commission (FWC).

The broadcaster has faced internal criticism after staff raised concerns about the state of the ABC’s “pro-Israel” coverage of the conflict between Israel and Hamas since October 7 last year.

During a meeting in November, initiated by editorial policy manager Mark Maley, staff raised issues around the broadcaster’s refusal to use phrases like “invasion” and “occupation” during their coverage.

Others said the coverage had impacted their relationships with communities and their abilities to do their jobs.

Ms Lattouf, an award-winning journalist who worked as a fill-in host for Sydney’s Mornings radio slot and ABC Sydney in December, is being represented by decorated workplace lawyer Josh Bornstein in her claim against the broadcaster.

Her claim has been amended to allege she was sacked on December 20 “because she expressed a political opinion and also because of her race”.

“Ms Lattouf was summoned to a meeting with senior management and told she was terminated immediately, because she had reposted a Human Rights Watch (HRW) social media post alleging the Israeli government is using starvation as a weapon of war in Gaza,” a statement from Maurice Blackburn lawyers alleges.

“ABC news also reported these same claims by the reputable human rights organisation.

“Since October 7 and the ensuing conflict in the Middle East, it has become notorious in the media industry that Arab and Muslim journalists are being intimidated, censored and sacked.”

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