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Ex-AG ends defamation case against Aus national broadcaster

Defamation Case Against Aus National Broadcaster
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Canberra: Australia’s former Attorney-General (AG) Christian Porter has dropped his defamation case against national broadcaster the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

The ABC reported on Monday afternoon that Porter decided to discontinue legal proceedings against the broadcaster and reporter Louise Milligan.

Porter, now the Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, launched a defamation case against the ABC and Milligan after the broadcaster published allegations that a government minister had been accused of raping a woman in the 1980s, Xinhua news agency.

The article did not name Porter but he later identified himself as the minister in question and strenuously denied the allegations.

Speaking outside court on Monday, Porter said his decision to sue the broadcaster had led to “a humiliating back down”.

“They regret the outcome of that article,” he said.

“That is a humiliating back down for the ABC no matter what way they want to spin it.”

Following mediation between the two parties, the ABC agreed to add a note to the end of the article saying it “regretted” that some readers “misinterpreted” it “as an accusation of guilt against Porter”.

“All parties have agreed to not pursue the matter any further. No damages will be paid,” said ABC.

“The ABC has not said that it regrets the article. As we have stated, the ABC stands by the importance of the article, which reported on matters of significant public interest,” the broadcaster said in another statement following Porter’s comments.

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