|How the BBC reported Lord Trimble's interview|
Former NI First Minister attacks BBC over indy 'NI peace threat' claims
By a Newsnet reporter (3 May 2014)
The BBC has been accused of misreporting comments from a former Northern Ireland First Minister after the corporation claimed he said a Yes vote would threaten peace in the province.
In its broadcast and online news reports on comments from Lord Trimble, the broadcaster said the politician viewed Scottish independence as "the biggest threat to peace in Northern Ireland".
The claims by the corporation followed an interview in which Lord Trimble had said he believed a Yes vote in the independence referendum would lead to strains in Northern Irish politics.
He said: "If the referendum in Scotland goes in the way I regard as the wrong result, that will change the political context in Northern Ireland and that would cause strains...It would put what is now a non-issue [a possible referendum] into a major issue and it would be divisive, obviously."
However, claims by the BBC that Lord Trimble had said Scottish independence would lead to a return to violence in the province were challenged by the former First Minister himself who accused the BBC of attributing views to him that he did not hold.
Speaking on Good Morning Scotland, Lord Trimble confronted BBC Scotland presenter Bill Whiteford who had earlier repeated the claim, saying: "Unfortunately you are not the only person who has made this mistake."
Referring to several BBC reports claiming he had said a Yes vote would mean a return to violence, he added: "I did not say that. It is not my view."
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