As it happened: Phone hacking scandal

Key points

  • News Corp announces it has withdrawn its bid to take full control of BSkyB
  • David Cameron clashes with Ed Miliband over Andy Coulson at final PM Questions before summer recess
  • David Cameron appoints Lord Justice Leveson to head phone hacking inquiry
  • Inquiry will have power to call media proprietors, editors and politicians
  • Prime minister meets parents of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler

    Hello and welcome to our live coverage on the ongoing phone hacking scandal. It's going to be a busy day, with the focus very much on politicians. David Cameron will give MPs a statement on the issue, after what looks set to be another turbulent prime minister's questions - the last before Parliament's summer recess. There will also be a full debate later in the afternoon on News Corporation's bid for a full takeover of BSkyB. We'll be here all day, covering the latest developments and reaction.


    BBC political correspondent Laura Kuenssberg says the debate on the BSkyB takeover, put forward by Labour, is "testament to how serious" the whole issue of press behaviour has become.


    Laura Kuenssberg says it is "unprecedented" that the government is backing a motion - on the BSkyB takeover - put forward by the opposition. She adds that David Cameron is looking at the debate as an opportunity to "come out fighting".


    In the US, Senator John Rockerfeller, chairman of the committee on commerce, science and transportation, is calling for an investigation into News Corp's activities there. He said the News of the World scandal raised "serious questions" over whether any laws had been broken in the US.


    Sir Hugh Orde, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers, was on BBC Radio 4's Today programme earlier. Addressing allegations of police corruption, he said there were "no circumstances" in which any officer should accept payments.


    Sir Hugh Orde also revealed that, while a chief constable himself, he had sacked officers who divulged too much information to outsiders, adding that those wrongdoers had "not even" been paid by their accomplices.


    Labour MP Tom Watson, one of the main political foes of News Corp, is on the list to ask a question of David Cameron in the House of Commons shortly after midday. It could be lively.

    0932: Schtickshift in London

    tweets: #notw Political parties are more united than at any time since the war. Can London withstand the invasion by an old man and his personal trainer?


    Will former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who has alleged his privacy was breached by News International, speak during the Labour-led debate on News Corp's proposed takeover of BSkyB?


    The full wording of the Labour motion to be debated by MPs later is: "That this House believes that it is in the public interest for Rupert Murdoch and News Corporation to withdraw their bid for BSkyB." The debate is scheduled to end by 1900 BST and is expected to get going some time around 1600 BST.

    0945: Journalist Liz Jarvis

    tweets: Caught up with some tabloid journos yesterday. Very stressful times. Sad that decent journos caught in crossfire


    The BBC's Laura Kuenssberg reports that David Cameron will not attend the BSkyB debate in the Commons. Labour sources said this showed the prime minister was "on the run". Mr Cameron will be giving a statement on the forthcoming inquiry into hacking and media standards straight after Prime Minister's Questions, though. He is also meeting the family of murdered teenager Milly Dowler today.


    Work and pensions minister Chris Grayling tells Sky News the alleged behaviour by parts of the press has been "clearly unacceptable" and that the inquiries to be set up by the government must ensure "it never happens again".

    Andy Hayman

    Former Metropolitan Police officer Andy Hayman has accused MPs of a "lynch mob mentality" after he was questioned by the Commons home affairs committee on Tuesday. The ex-assistant commissioner - who was in charge of the first phone hacking investigation - was accused by committee members of being "a dodgy geezer" and "like Clouseau rather than Columbo". Mr Hayman told Nick Ferrari on London radio station LBC: "I've been through the mill several times in court, in journalistic interviews. I've never been treated like yesterday."

    1010: MP Claire Perry

    tweets: But is that just Murdoch hacking? Suspect it's universal. Never been a better time to change those security settings.


    In Australia, Rupert Murdoch's News Limited firm is conducting a "thorough review" of all editorial expenditures over the past three years. However, chief executive John Hartigan says he has "absolutely no reason to suspect any wrongdoing".


    Labour MP Tom Watson says the events of the last week have been a "huge wake-up call" for politicians. It's "brilliant" to see the three main party leaders coming to an agreement to back the Commons motion on BSkyB, he tells the BBC News Channel.


    The BBC should "take a look at itself" over its previous coverage of the phone hacking scandal, Labour MP Tom Watson says. The organisation was "slightly intimidated" by News International while the previous MPs' inquiry was going on, he adds.


    Tom Watson says he thinks Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks are unlikely to attend the culture, media and sport select committee hearing to which they have been summoned. He tells the BBC that the committee is likely to "empty chair" them if this is the case. In other words, they will wait for the trio to show up and call a halt to proceedings if they do not appear. Mr Watson says they are not interested in grilling any other News International executives.

    1032: Scottspeig

    comments: This is nothing but a witch-hunt over Murdoch. There is no real issue as to why he shouldn't own BSkyB apart from the fact that journalists use underhand tactics to get stories. Always have, always will. How this relates to the owner or whether he should be allowed ownership of a company is beyond me.

    1036: Albert Mbaze Arrey in Cameroon

    emails: I think that media ethics bridge is only punishable by the media professional guilds. Let News of the World be tried for intrusion into privacy and personal space, but let the profession decide its fate on the issue of neglect of the ethical news value of dignity.


    Former Lib Dem leader Charles Kennedy has proposed an amendment to the motion on BSkyB to be debated by MPs. It calls for "a statutory settlement for the press based upon the principles of diversity of ownership, fairness and honesty".


    BBC political correspondent Iain Watson says that Charles Kennedy's amendment is an attempt to force a vote in Parliament on the BSkyB motion, which otherwise may have gone through "on the nod".

    1046: Laura Kuenssberg Chief political correspondent, BBC News channel

    tweets: No 10 says PM just doesn't have time to do hacking debate after his hacking statement as well and statement could be quite chunky

    1050: Alan Dazely in West Sussex

    emails: Comments that this is a witch hunt to get Murdoch are a further illustration of how low this thing has got. This is not a witch hunt but simply our representatives in parliament whom we put there, asserting the power of parliament and democracy. It is not ideal but it is a whole sight better than a media oligarch stamping all over everyone's privacy and corrupting politics in this country. Any re-allignment of media in this country would do well to begin with making it illegal for anyone to own newspapers in a country in which they do not reside or pay taxes.

    1054: Judy Rose in Devizes

    emails: David Cameron has to take part in the BSkyB debate. His sudden change of mind and absence from the Commons for this extremely important debate raises questions about his commitment and competence at dealing with this scandalous situation. Is he afraid of Ed Milliband or just afraid of Rupert Murdoch? Either way, it won't do.


    The Cystic Fibrosis Trust has released a statement regarding Gordon Brown's claims about the Sun newspaper. It says: "The release of any medical information to the media or anyone else is a decision for patients or, in the case of children, their parents to make. The Cystic Fibrosis Trust does not condone the release or publication of such information, without express permission, regardless of their motivation." Mr Brown alleges that the newspaper accessed his family medical records without his knowledge, later reporting that his son Fraser had cystic fibrosis. But the Sun says the information came from a member of the public.

    1104: A C McGregor in Nottingham

    tweets: So is Vince going to speak in the #hacking debate? And can one get away with repeating "told you so" in the house?


    Rupert Murdoch has arrived at News International's Wapping HQ, in east London, where he is masterminding the firm's response to the allegations being made against it.


    Channel 4 News' Jon Snow says this is the first time in his working lifetime that an opposition party put down a motion which the government of the day decides to endorse. The Guardian's Julian Glover says David Cameron has been dragged into supporting the motion and will have to work out what is legally safe to do. Read more commentators' views in the BBC's Daily View.


    Downing Street confirms that Commons leader Sir George Young - and not David Cameron - will lead the government's response during the debate on BSkyB. The prime minister's spokesman said it did not make sense for Mr Cameron to speak twice on the issue. The PM will make a statement on the phone hacking inquiries at 1230 BST. The debate is scheduled for later in the afternoon.


    Downing Street says that, if there is a vote on the BSkyB motion, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt - who is overseeing the proposed takeover of the firm by News Corp - will not take part.


    With just under 40 minutes to go until prime minister's questions, Ed Miliband's team will be finalising the Labour leader's tactics. Is there a chance he will attack the prime minister on his likely non-attendance at the BSkyB debate? Or is it possible he will leave the News Corp issues alone at PMQs and go for something else? Perhaps the unfolding humanitarian catastrophe in eastern Africa? Or maybe the state of the economy? It is Mr Miliband's last chance to ask a direct question of the PM before the summer recess, so he will want to get the tone right.


    As we prepare for Prime Minister's Questions, just a note to say that BBC political correspondent Iain Watson will be in the Commons, giving details of the goings on in the chamber. And, courtesy of BBC Two's Daily Politics, Transport Secretary Philip Hammond and Labour's former Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett will provide their view.

    1133: Chris in Guildford

    emails: So we have a totally united House of Commons. Fantastic! Let's hope that all parties now fully realise that it is the will of the people that they are elected to represent, that democracy is about making change for the good of the majority, not furthering individual political careers.


    From BBC Monitoring: Liu Zefan, in Shanghai's Dongfang Zaobao, writes: "It will be a tragedy if the phone hacking scandal last week quickly dissipates or just brings minor changes in the conduct of media professionals. But it will also be a tragedy if the media are oppressed and 'hijacked' into only serving the elite."


    Transport Secretary Philip Hammond tells BBC Two's Daily Politics he suspects the Labour motion on BSkyB will go through without the need for a vote. Labour's Margaret Beckett adds that no MP is likely to shout "No" when the proposition is put before the House, which would be necessary to force a vote.


    Mrs Beckett adds that Labour leader Ed Miliband has been "very bold" in his efforts to push for an inquiry into hacking. But Conservative Philip Hammond replies that politicians of all parties were "too close" to the Murdoch empire in the past.

    1140: BBC News website reader

    emails: The politicians cannot stop the takeover going through and they know it and so does Murdoch and his legal team. The Competition Commission will not stop the deal going through because there is no legal basis and anything else will see them get annihilated in the courts. Time to face facts - this deal will go through whether we like it or not.


    Ahead of the weekly showdown between David Cameron and Ed Miliband, MPs are discussing aid to the developing world. International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell says the UK is right to carry on its programme in India. The Commons is about two-thirds full.

    1144: Mark Hayes

    tweets: Sky News keeps going on about public anger over the #notw phone hacking,i'm a member of the public and I'm not angry,wasn't even a surprise


    Labour's Margaret Beckett says only a few "rotten apples" among the police have taken payment for information, but adds that critics will be able to "throw" allegations at decent officers following recent revelations.


    The Commons chamber is louder than normal this far ahead of Prime Minister's Questions. Speaker John Bercow tells MPs to pipe down, as shadow international development secretary pays tribute to the generosity of the British people in helping the people of eastern Africa.

    Len in Wigan 1157:

    texts: Cameron not speaking this afternoon is disrespectful to the country.


    David Cameron is in his seat. The noise level is high - as is anticipation.


    BBC political editor Nick Robinson says that, in future, meetings between political leaders and media executives will have to be revealed in public.


    David Cameron is on his feet. Lib Dem Duncan Hames asks about the allegations against News Corp. He asks if they are the actions of a "fit and proper person" - referring to the test that News Corp's proposed takeover of BSkyB. The PM says those who did wrong must be prosecuted.


    Ed Miliband says it is an "insult" to Milly Dowler's family that Rebekah Brooks is still in her job. Mr Cameron replies that separating what happened at News International and the BSkyB takeover is not possible. "They should stop worrying about mergers and sort out the mess they have created," says the PM.


    Mr Cameron also repeats his call for Rebekah Brooks to quit as News International chief executive - saying her resignation offer should have been accepted.


    Ed Miliband says it is "quite wrong" for News Corp to expand its UK media stake. The PM responds that the law will be followed, but that the Commons should send a message to the company that it must "clean its stables".

    1205: Via Blog Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Ed Miliband has decided to highlight divisions rather than stress consensus - quizzing David Cameron on Rebekah Brooks, whom the PM knows socially, and taunts Mr Cameron over his decision not to speak in the forthcoming debate.


    Mr Miliband asks about the relationship between politics and the press. The PM says the main party leaders had an "excellent" meeting last night and would "move ahead in a way that takes the whole country with us".


    Politicians and media must be "more transparent" about their meetings, Mr Cameron says, adding that he will say more during his statement following Prime Minister's Questions.

    1207: Matthew Brown

    tweets: It is nice to see the Prime Minister agreeing on Brooks. Always good to see cross-party agreement on issues. #PMQs

    1207: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Ed Miliband wants to stay on the front foot with new demands on the PM - this time over compelling politicians to testify on oath


    Mr Cameron is asked about his hiring of ex-News of the World editor Andy Coulson as his communications chief. He says that, if evidence he has given to police proves incorrect, and that if it is found he committed illegal behaviour, he "should be prosecuted".

    1209: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Again Ed Milinand tries to highlight divisions - especially on what he regards as the PM's Achilles heel, Andy Coulson. This is the first time that David Cameron has said the Guardian's warnings about the former tabloid editor were not passed on to him.


    The Tory benches erupt as Mr Cameron speaks. Commons Speaker John Bercow quells the uproar.


    Speaker Bercow is shouting himself hoarse after a hot-tempered exchange between Ed Miliband and David Cameron over Andy Coulson. He threatens to expel Children's Minister Tim Loughton.


    To be clear - the Labour leader said the "fullest account" of information given to him before he hired Andy Coulson must be published. The PM said the public wants politicians to sort out "this firestorm". He added that the failed police investigation was during Labour's time in power and that he is providing leadership.


    That was Mr Miliband's final questioning of the prime minster until September, when MPs return from their summer recess.

    1216: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Ed Miliband went for the jugular by not just attacking Andy Coulson but the chief of staff Ed Llewellyn - there have been murmurs on the Conservative backbenches that the PM has not been handling this well but it is possible the Labour leader's partisan tone will give them an excuse to rally round Mr Cameron.


    Tory Matthew Hancock, a former adviser to Chancellor George Osborne, asks the PM what he's doing to keep the UK out of the eurozone. Mr Cameron says eurozone countries must act faster to deal with crises.

    1217: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    The allegation against Ed Miliband's press secretary Tom Baldwin is that he handled information illegally acquired by a private investigator while looking into Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft's finances, when he was a Times journalist. Labour deny the allegations while News International say Mr Baldwin would not have been authorised to engage a private investigator when on their staff.


    Labour's Mar Glindon asks about Mr Coulson's employment by Mr Cameron. The PM says he chose to accept the assurances he received from Mr Coulson and police. It is important to treat people as innocent until prove guilty, he adds.


    Responding to a question from Tory Andrew Percy, Mr Cameron says it is important to deal with metal theft.

    1218: Joey Lopes

    tweets: I'm no expert but surely Miliband going on about Coulson working for the PM does nothing to address/fix the bigger hacking issues. #pmqs

    1219: William Tomaney

    tweets: Miliband should stop going on about Coulson, we don't want Cameron to apologise a million times, concentrate on sorting out the mess #PMQs


    Labour's Tom Watson rises to loud cheers from his colleagues. He urges the PM to see whether families of victims of the 9/11 were "targeted by News International criminals". Mr Cameron says he will do so and that he will reveal details of alleged UK phone hacking in his statement, due at 1230 BST.


    Labour's Rushanara Ali asks about Andy Coulson. Mr Cameron repeats that he was given assurances and that, if they were untrue, Mr Coulson should face prosecution.


    Tory David Burrowes asks about the US's desire to extradite alleged computer hacker Gary McKinnon. Mr Cameron says the issue must be dealt with judiciously by Home Secretary Theresa May.

    1222: Kate Willoughby

    tweets: Tom Watson impressively measured as he speaks. The rowdy mob is immediately silenced. #pmqs


    The PM says there is a huge amount of back-office cost to be cut at the Ministry of Defence and that this is happening.

    1223: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Lord Ashdown did warn David Cameron's staff that the Prime Minister could suffer "great reputational damage" by taking Andy Coulson into Downing St but he did not speak directly to Mr Cameron himself, though he assumed the message had been passed on.


    Tory Graham Stuart says News International used "blagging" to get details of party donor Lord Ashcroft's bank account - as alleged in the then Tory Treasurer's book Dirty Politics, Dirty Times. Mr Cameron says the inquiries will get to the bottom of such issues.


    Speaker John Bercow is rather hoarse as he announces Lib Dem Malcom Bruce is to ask a question - possibly a result of his earlier attempts to keep MPs quiet. Mr Bruce asks the PM about extending sign language support to families of children with hearing difficulties. He agrees to look into it.


    Labour's Geoffrey Robinson is heckled as he asks a rather long question on the decision to award the Thameslink contract to a foreign firm. Mr Cameron says the procurement procedures were set by the previous government.

    1227: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Just as well there is parliamentary privilege - from leading Conservative backbencher Graham Stuart, a very forceful focus on Labour's past links to News International


    Tory Stephen Mosley calls for the Crewe to Chester line to be electrified. Mr Cameron recalls spending a lot of time at Crewe station at last year's election "accompanied people in top hat and tails". He says it is not on the current programme but the government wants more electrification.


    Conservative James Clappison says the UK should not pay for any future EU bailout. Mr Cameron says the country is a "safe haven" from problems, but the UK must be helpful, as it is "in our own interests".


    A Labour MP urges the PM to deal with "rip-offs" by debt firms. He says he will look at the issue.


    A startling admission from the PM - or it would have been two weeks ago before the latest hacking revelations - on the relationship between politicians and the media: "Your bins are are gone through by some media organisations but you hold back from dealing with it because you want good relations with the media."


    That's it for PMQs - now on to Mr Cameron's statement on phone hacking and media standards.


    Mr Cameron says all MPs want to sort the current situation out.


    Mr Cameron says the current police investigation into hacking is fully resourced.


    The PM says police are looking at alleged incidents of hacking and other offences affecting 3,870. They have made eight arrests.


    Mr Cameron says reviews of wrongdoing and press regulation must take place - under the umbrella of a single inquiry. It will be led by Lord Justice Leveson and given the power to call witnesses including media proprietors.


    The issue of cross-media ownership will be address by the inquiry, the PM announces.


    Mr Cameron says "serious questions" must be asked about News International's proposed takeover of BSkyB.

    1240: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    David Cameron emphasises that the judge-led inquiry will have the power to summon newspaper proprietors so even if Rupert Murdoch turns down an invitation to attend next week's culture and media select committee he may have to attend this inquiry.


    News International must focus on "getting its house in order", the PM says. Those found to have done wrong must have no role in running a media company in future, he tells MPs.


    All aspects of police relationships with the media must be beyond reproach, Mr Cameron says. The Independent Police Complaints Commission is looking at allegations of payments to officers, he informs the House.


    The PM says he will require all ministers and civil servants to record meetings with senior editors and media executives. This is a "first for our country" and help make the UK government "one of the most open in the world."


    Labour leader Ed Miliband opens his response to the PM's statement by saying progress must be made on an "agreed basis".


    Mr Miliband asks what steps the PM will take to preserve documents at Downing Street which might help the judge-led inquiry.


    The inquiry must be broadened to deal with relationships between politicians and the media. He asks whether witnesses will be compelled to attend under oath.


    Mr Miliband welcomes the transparency proposal, arguing it must be imposed retrospectively, so that he and Mr Cameron will publish all details of meetings with media executives dating back to the last general election.


    Mr Cameron says work on setting the terms of reference for the inquiry will start immediately.


    The inquiry panel, to be led by a judge, must have a range of expertise, Mr Cameron says.


    Mr Cameron says anyone the judge wants to call to the inquiry can be called under oath.


    The PM says he does not want statutory legislation for the press, arguing that parties should not get into a "bidding war" to undermine the principle of self-regulation.


    Speaker John Bercow opens the debate to backbenchers. Conservative culture committee chairman John Whittingdale urges the PM to remember that it was newspapers which exposed the wrongdoings perpetrated by News International. Mr Cameron agrees it is vital to keep a free press.


    Lib Dem deputy leader Simon Hughes asks if the inquiry will look at the Information Commissioner's inquiries into phone hacking, which happened in 2006. Mr Cameron says it was wrong that "we did not make more of these reports".


    Labour former Home Secretary Jack Straw says Lord Justice Leveson, who is heading the inquiry, is well qualified for the job.


    Mr Cameron says a regulatory system, outside government control, can be set up and be effective.

    1258: Abigail O'Reilly

    tweets: A free press is the cornerstone of our society, yes, but that does not mean illegal and immoral behaviour should be sanctioned. #pmqs

    1258: Herman Mittelholzer

    comments: This is the Murdoch Arab Spring. All the downtrodden politicians and those his organisation has exploited or coerced over the years appear to be rising up to enact their revenge. In some ways I feel sorry for him, in other ways we have to acknowledge that he is reaping the rewards of his own actions over decades. We are witnessing an empire brought to its knees!

    1303: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Well, our political contacts could be "outed" if politicians are required to make public meetings with all journalists not just editors, executives, and proprietors. An unintended consequence - it might also make a few political journos think twice about using the hoary old phrase "senior sources" when what is meant is they've had a passing word with an intern in a recently-elected backbencher's office.


    Labour MP and home affairs committee chairman Keith Vaz asks if the Metropolitan Police will get further resources, if required. The PM says it is up to the Met how it distributes resources.


    Former Lib Dem leader Sir Menzies Campbell stresses the importance of preserving the name of the Metropolitan Police.


    Mr Cameron says the inquiry will look at the employment of former public servants by media organisations.


    Labour's Tom Watson asks if Lord Leveson, heading the inquiry, will have access to the intelligence services. Mr Cameron says he can take the investigation in whichever direction he chooses.


    Labour's Barry Gardiner asks if Mr Cameron had any conversations with Andy Coulson around this time of his resignation. The PM says they discussed matters "many times" and that Mr Coulson quit his government role as he felt he "couldn't carry on" given the stories coming out.


    Tory Oliver Heald tells MPs there are concerns that hacking allegations have impeded the work of parliamentarians.


    Labour's Dennis Skinner says no media magnate should be able to own more than one newspaper. Mr Cameron says the judge leading the inquiry has the power to act as he thinks appropriate.

    1317: R M Yorks

    texts: Cameron sounds like a guilty school kid saying you did it first I only did what you did.


    In a response to a question about the police, David Cameron says officers have to be able to talk to newspapers to "explain what they are doing". But he says that relationship must be transparent and a "culture change" is needed.


    Returing briefly to Prime Minister's Questions - Speaker John Bercow seems to have ruffled feathers on the Tory benchers again. Children's Minister Tim Loughton - who was threatened with expulsion by Mr Bercow, who told him to start behaving like an adult - is not happy. He tweets (with reference to David Cameron's favourite, Michael Winner-inspired catcphrase): "Me thinks Speaker Bercow needs to calm down dear- 3rd time with same childish put down and I wasn't actually saying anything".


    Back to the hacking debate, Tory MP Graham Stuart says politicians have been "cosying up" to newspaper proprietors for years and should not be "going to their birthday parties". The prime minister says politicians can't behave like "monks in monasteries" and have to explain their policies to the media but this needs to be an open process.


    David Cameron says senior Met police officer John Yates has "some questions to answer" about his review of evidence in the initial inquiry into phone hacking. But he insists Mr Yates is doing a "good job" in his role as head of counter-terrorism in the UK.


    Labour MP Adrian Bailey says refusing to appear before a Commons select committee amounts to a contempt of Parliament and should be made a "criminal offence". David Cameron says this is an issue that the Leader of the House of Commons could look at.


    Labour's Jack Dromey goes on the attack, saying Mr Cameron has been "slow to act" over the scandal and neither Andy Coulson nor Rupert Murdoch would pass a "fit and proper person" test. The PM says he has taken some "major" action on the issue and points out that it is for Ofcom not politicians to decide who is fit to own media assets.

    1333: Laura Kuenssberg Chief political correspondent, BBC News channel

    tweets: No 10 now saying if there is a vote, Cameron will take part in it


    Referring to claims made by Gordon Brown about stories about his son, Lib Dem MP Jo Swinson says action needs to be taken against newspapers which do not break the law but whose practices are considered "unethical". The prime minister says whatever regulatory system is put in place, the media must show "common sense and decency" over stories they choose to publish.


    Rebekah Brooks has until 5pm today to respond to the culture committee's invitation to appear before it, the BBC understands. If she does not, the Serjeant at Arms can issue a formal summons, according to committee chairman John Whittingdale. If she fails to appear at Tuesday's hearing after being handed the summons the committee will report the matter to the Commons standards and privileges committee. The committee does not have the power to issue a summons to Rupert and James Murdoch, who have also been invited to attend, as they are US citizens.


    Tory MP Stephen Barclay asks whether the inquiry will examine whether any illegal payments have been made to relatives of police officers and other public servants in sensitive positions - such as doctors and prison governors. Mr Cameron says the inquiry must go "wherever the evidence leads".


    The prime minister is asked whether Rupert Murdoch should be compelled to appear before the public inquiry. He says it will be up to the inquiry to decide who is called but he expects editors and proprietors to give evidence under oath.


    Remember David Cameron's startling claim at PMQs that he put up with things like reporters going through his bins because he wanted to maintain good relations with the media? Well, according to his official spokesman, it was Mirror Group reporters who did the dirty deed when Mr Cameron was in opposition...


    Back to the Commons debate and a series of questions about regulation of the press. Tory MP George Eustice, once David Cameron's press secretary, says the current system of self-regulation by newspapers has too often been abused. The prime minister says he favours "independent" regulation to enforce standards rather than the "heavy hand" of statutory requirements.

    1357: Will Phipps

    tweets: Us Brits really need to learn from the US when it comes to political inquiries - current #hacking interviews are no Senate hearing!


    The BBC's Iain Watson has been getting more information about the terms of the inquiry. He says the judge will be able to compel witnesses to attend, including convicted criminals serving prison sentences. The media standards aspect of the inquiry will consider cross-media ownership, he adds, and is likely to report within a year.


    The Commons debate has now ended with David Cameron having taken questions from MPs for more than an hour. The prime minister will move onto a meeting with the family of Milly Dowler while MPs will later debate the proposed takeover of BSkyB, without Mr Cameron.

    1405: Asha Mehta in Twickenham

    texts: The Murdochs may not appear in front of the culture committee. Ridiculous we can allow them to own large parts of the British media but can't require them to answer questions before a parliamentary committee.

    1416: Breaking News

    News Corporation has withdrawn its bid for BSkyB.


    Robert Peston says the dramatic move will have been "incredibly painful" for Rupert Murdoch as he was "desperate" to conclude the deal and get control of the whole of the broadcaster. The decision comes ahead of a Commons debate in which all MPs were going to urge News Corporation to pull the bid.


    The BBC's Political Editor Nick Robinson says the aborted bid is a "massive turnaround" for Rupert Murdoch and a big change from what the government was expecting only a week ago. He believes many MPs will see this as a victory for Parliament.


    Ivan Lewis is the first senior Labour figure to react to the news. The shadow culture secretary says this is a "victory for the public, a victory for Parliament and a victory for the tremendous leadership of Ed Miliband". But he says this must not deflect from the urgent need to get to the bottom of what went on at the News of the World.


    MPs have achieved their objective and there is now the question of whether the Commons debate about the Sky bid will go ahead. Ivan Lewis says he thinks it will but the decision will be made in the next hour.


    This from the BBC's Laura Kuenssberg in Downing Street. She says No 10 has welcomed News Corporation's decision to withdraw the bid. Downing Street has again urged the company to focus on cleaning up its UK newspaper business, she adds.


    News Corporation has released a statement explaining its decision. It says: "We believed that the proposed acquisition of BSkyB by News Corporation would benefit both companies but it has become clear that it is too difficult to progress in this climate."


    More from the News Corporation statement. It says it is "proud" of its involvement with BSkyB and is committed to remaining as a long-term shareholder in the business.

    1437: Fiona McGrath

    tweets: So News Corp has withdrawn its BSkyB takeover bid. I can't really believe that Murdoch would give up so easily. People 1-0 Murdoch?


    Latest on the BSkyB debate in the Commons later - it is still due to go ahead, sources tell us.


    Here's some reaction from the Liberal Democrats. Their culture spokesman Don Foster applauds the decision, describing it as "amazing". But he says it does not "draw a line" under the phone hacking scandal. And he raises the question of whether News Corp is a "fit and proper" organisation to own nearly 40% of the UK's largest broadcaster.


    Here's some news from the BBC's Isabel Webster outside News International headquarters in east London. She says the senior lawyer who vetted News of the World stories for more than 20 years is to leave the publisher, Tom Crone has stepped down as legal manager of News International after 26 years at the company.


    Alleged hacking victim Lord Prescott has reacted to the news via Twitter. He says: "So BSkyB bid over. PCC (Press Complaints Commission) to be abolished. Senior News International staff arrested. Inquiry into police and press on its way. Yep. I'm happy."


    Vince Cable - the minister stripped of the power to rule on the BSkyB takeover after telling undercover reporters he had "declared war" on Rupert Murdoch - may be feeling vindicated right now. A source close to Mr Cable tells the BBC: "This is absolutely the right thing to do and the new inquiry gives us an opportunity to take a good look at how the whole media operates."


    Labour leader Ed Miliband says the aborted BSkyB bid is a "victory for people up and down the country" and is a message to Rupert Murdoch that his ambitions in the UK should go "this far and no further".


    The Labour leader adds that "no-one should exercise power in this country without responsibility".


    BSkyB's share price dropped 4% after the announcement that the bid was being withdrawn but has now recovered to the price it was at earlier today - 684p.


    The BBC's Laura Kuenssberg says Labour intend to press ahead with the Commons debate on BSkyB although there is unlikely to be a vote at the end of it.


    Rebekah Brooks could be issued with a summons by the Commons if she does not respond to an invitation to appear before the culture committee on Tuesday by 5pm, says committee chairman John Whittingdale.


    The Commons does not have the power to compel James and Rupert Murdoch to appear before a committee as they are US citizens.

    1505: Laura Kuenssberg Chief political correspondent, BBC News channel

    tweets: Official line now from no 10 - 'we welcome the news' News Int should now get its 'house in order'


    Robert Peston says it is hard to see how News Corporation could revive the bid until all criminal proceedings over hacking are completed - likely to take years. This is the most serious UK setback in Rupert Murdoch's career, he believes.


    Deputy PM Nick Clegg says: "This is the decent and sensible thing to do," adding that "we have a once-in-a-generation chance to clean up the murky underworld and the corrupted relationship between the police, politics and the press".


    BSkyB chief executive Jeremy Darroch says the firm is "very confident" about its future growth prospects.


    Labour leader Ed Miliband says the fact that the main parties were able to unite in opposing the bid had played a part in Mr Murdoch's decision.


    Labour MP Tom Watson - who has led the campaign against Rupert Murdoch's company - says "the nation is getting angrier and angrier about this, because the real issue is that there is no corporate humility from News International".


    Mr Watson says the scandal will "run on and on" until someone at the top of News International takes responsibility and apologises for "creating a culture in a newsroom that would allow a journalist to target the phone of an abducted 13-year-old girl".


    More reaction from BSkyB. The broadcaster says it is delivering on a "clear and consistent" strategy and building a more "profitable business". It thanks its staff for their "unrelenting focus" during the furore over the News Corp bid.


    Tory MP John Whittingdale tells Sky he is still hoping Rupert and James Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks will give evidence to his committee next week. Committee member Tom Watson told the BBC earlier he did not think that they would.


    Media regulator Ofcom says that it is "still reviewing under 'fit and proper' criteria News Corp's ownership of the 39% of BSkyB it currently owns" - despite the company withdrawing its bid to fully take over the broadcaster.


    Deputy Prime Minister and Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg says News Corp have done "the decent and sensible thing".


    Lord Prescott tells the BBC the scandal raises question marks about whether News Corp is a suitable organisation to be a shareholder in BSkyB and to own other titles such as The Sun and The Times.


    Lawyers for the family of Milly Dowler are about to make a statement outside Downing Street.


    The judge heading up the inquiry into phone hacking - Lord Justice Leveson - has issued a statement saying work "will begin immediately" to set it up - although he says some of it will be delayed until after the police investigation.


    Lord Justice Leveson says the inquiry "must balance the desire for a robustly free press with the rights of the individual while, at the same time, ensuring that critical relationships between the press, Parliament, the government and the police are maintained".


    The Dowlers are "delighted" that the inquiry is taking place, their spokesman says, and it will help the "ordinary victims" of hacking.


    Meetings with David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband have enabled the Dowlers "to have their voices listened to", the family's spokesman adds.


    The Dowler family aren't commenting directly themselves - they are watching from outside the famous door of 10 Downing Street as others give a statement on their behalf following their meeting with the prime minister.


    A smile and a nod from Sally Dowler as Hacked Off spokesman Evan Harris - the ex Lib Dem MP - pays tribute to the family.


    The press conference has ended and the Dowler family have gone back into Downing Street.


    Lib Dem deputy leader Simon Hughes says "the sun is setting on Rupert Murdoch's British empire".


    In New York, News Corp's shares have risen slightly on the news. The BBC's Laura Trevelyan says investors feared that News Corp would have had to pay too much for BSkyB and are relieved the uncertainty is over.


    James Forsyth, political editor of the Spectator, tells Sky that the news that the BSkyB bid has been withdrawn will be a relief to David Cameron. The prime minister would not want to be seen to be "dancing to Ed Miliband's tune" - he says.


    Media analyst Steve Hewlett tells Sky News he doubts Mr Murdoch has given up on the "profitable" BSkyB broadcaster and they may want to resurrect the bid at some point.


    Former ITN boss Stewart Purvis says Ofcom will not be able to ignore claims by senior police officers that News International sought to thwart their hacking investigation when conducting their "fit and proper" test.


    A few biographical details on the man leading the hacking inquiry: The Rt. Hon. Sir Brian Leveson, 62, was called to the bar in 1970, is a past chairman of the Criminal Justice Council and chairman of the Sentencing Council. His interests include walking and travel.


    Plaid Cymru's Jonathan Edwards says it was "unthinkable" the bid could have gone ahead and News Corp was right to withdraw it.


    The Commons debate on the BSkyB bid is expected to still go ahead - but it could be some time before it starts.


    There are a handful of MPs currently debating fixed-term parliaments in the Commons, which could go on until just after 5pm. The BSkyB debate would have to end by 7pm, according to Commons rules, so it won't be a marathon session either way.


    More on inquiry chief Lord Justice Leveson - he is the man who prosecuted Rose West.


    Commenting on how the inquiry will work, Lord Justice Leveson said: "The press provides an essential check on all aspects of public life. That is why any failure within the media affects all of us. At the heart of this inquiry, therefore, may be one simple question: who guards the guardians?"


    Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown will speak early on in the Commons debate on BSkyB, says the BBC's Iain Watson.


    Transport Secretary Philip Hammond tells Sky News that News Corporation have made the "right decision" in withdrawing its BSkyB bid.


    The BBC's Laura Kuenssberg says in the longer term, if the commercial environment was right, there is nothing to stop News Corp bidding to take over BSkyB again - but it will depend on the outcome of the police investigation.


    The New York Times - a rival of the Murdoch press in the US - says the news suggests Rupert Murdoch is "in retreat". It says the decision came shortly after a "rancorous" session of Prime Minister's Questions.


    The SNP says the "strength of public feeling" meant the bid could not have gone ahead.


    Conservative MP Therese Coffey says News Corporation's decision makes "good commercial sense", as its worldwide priority should be to restore its reputation.


    Tory MP Jacob Rees Mogg tells Sky News says there has been an "extraordinary hysteria and frenzy" directed towards News Corp and that it has acted in a "politically adroit way" in withdrawing its bid for BSkyB.


    In his first TV interview since the news broke, David Cameron says dropping the BSkyB bid is "the right decision for the country". He says the focus must now be on the public inquiry and police investigation.


    Labour's former London Mayor, Ken Livingstone, says he is "delighted" at the withdrawal of News Corp's BSkyB takeover bid. Rupert Murdoch's "plans to gain even more control are effectively dead", he tells Sky News.


    MPs have finished debating proposed legislation on fixed-term Parliaments and are about to have a vote. This means the start of the Commons debate on BSkyB is nearing.


    In his latest blog, BBC Political Editor Nick Robinson, says David Cameron has had a major scare over BSkyB and - although he has done all that was asked of him - the dangers are far from over. He still faces questions about Andy Coulson and his relations with the Murdoch clan.


    John Rentoul, from the Independent on Sunday, says Rupert Murdoch's UK newspaper business is in "very serious trouble". It is doubtful whether Mr Murdoch will want to keep hold of his other papers, he adds.


    Business Secretary Vince Cable says it is "very difficult" to imagine News Corp re-launching its bid for BSkyB. Parliament is "very clear" in its view of the matter, he tells the BBC News Channel.


    Vince Cable says he does not want to "personalise" the decision by News Corp.


    MPs are still debating the Fixed-Term Parliament Bill. The BSkyB debate is expected fairly soon.


    Lib Dem sources have told us they are keen that their party gets some share of the credit for Rupert Murdoch dropping the BskyB bid - something Nick Clegg called for on Monday, says the BBC's Iain Watson.

    1702: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    I understand Lib Dem culture spokesman Don Foster spoke to Labour when the motion MPs are about to debate was being drawn up and they agreed on something which those two parties - at least - could support. The demand for the BSkyB bid to be dropped was made by the Dowler family in their meeting with Nick Clegg, Lib Dem sources say.


    The debate on the BSkyB bid - a little overtaken now the firm has changed its plans - is now under way in the Commons.


    Labour leader Ed Miliband says it is "unusual for a motion in this House to succeed before the debate on it begins".


    News Corp's decision would not have happened without the political pressure placed on the firm, Mr Miliband says.


    "We are told there is worse to come," Mr Miliband says about the revelations involving News Corp-owned papers.


    Tory MP Bill Cash says the inquiry should be extended to cover radio and TV.

    1708: The Economic Times

    reports that "Despite announcing a USD 5 billion share buyback - using the cash set aside for the BskyB acquisition- Newscorp's share price in US, and Australia, both continued to haemorrhage. In just the past week, Newscorp shares lost USD 5 billion in value, while BskyB's shares did a minor jump after having lost 15% in the past week."


    Ed Miliband says Rupert and James Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks should agree to answer questions from the culture select committee.

    1712: Graham Foulkes

    emails: The inquiries that have been announced are to look at the relationship between the police, politicians and the press. What about the public? The tipping point for this story was when the public became involved. It's not all about the politicians!


    Rupert Murdoch has "no recognition" of the views of the people of the UK, Ed Miliband tells MPs. It is a "cruel irony" that the News of the World closure has not meant Rebekah Brooks - the former editor - losing her job, while other staff are being laid off.

    1713: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Lord Mandelson is staring intently at Ed Miliband from the gallery above the Commons chamber


    SNP MP Pete Wishart accuses Mr Miliband of getting the "tone wrong" on the phone hacking scandal when he debated the issues with David Cameron at Prime Minister's Question's at lunchtime.


    The Labour leader says it is a "painful truth" that politicians have been in thrall to the media for too long.


    Mr Miliband pays tribute to Commons Speaker John Bercow for treating the hacking issue with seriousness.


    "The country wanted its voice to be heard. Today it has been," Mr Miliband tells the House, saying it is a great day for Parliament and MPs.


    For the government, Commons leader Sir George Young says today represents a victory for Parliament.


    Sir George says it was "unrealistic" for the public to separate recent revelations from News Corp's bid for BSkyB.

    1721: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Sources close to Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt he should take credit for today's outcome as he sent a searching letter to regulator Ofcom on Monday!


    MPs have conducted a "relentless campaign for the truth", Sir George tells MPs. This is turning into a bit of a love-in - not surprising, perhaps, given that all sides are in agreement. Makes quite a change from most Commons debates.


    Commons leader Sir George says MPs now have the chance to regain public confidence in Parliament following its role in bringing about News Corp's decision.


    Responding to a question from a Labour MP, Sir George says it is too soon to say whether the News International scandal has any "comparability" to Watergate in the 1970s.


    Sir George says the tradition of a "lively press" must continue, with police being "above reproach". He sits down.


    Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown gets up to speak in the Commons. He jokes that it is "like the old days", with the Sun running the headline "Brown wrong" again.


    Mr Brown says the Commons "must show it can rise to the challenge", arguing that, apart from peace and war, there is no greater issue than people's liberty.

    1730: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Labour benches hugely irritated by attempts by Conservative MPs to intervene during Gordon Brown's speech.


    It is important never to undermine freedom of the press or individuals, Mr Brown says.


    Many "wholly innocent" people have had their "private sorrows... bought and sold by News International for private gain", Mr Brown says.


    Lawbreaking "on an industrial scale" has taken place, Mr Brown tells MPs.

    1733: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    They say revenge is a dish best served cold. Gordon Brown was very hurt that the Sun chose the day of his 2009 conference speech to announce they were backing the Conservatives not Labour.


    Mr Brown blames a "criminal-media nexus" for the wrongdoing. News International "descended from the gutter to the sewers", he adds. He says that, when he became prime minister, he had "no idea" this was going on.

    1734: Suraj Samant

    emails: It is fantastic to see Gordon Brown there, it was immoral what The Sunday Times did. He makes an extremely important point that the freedom of the individual and the freedom of the press should be balanced.


    During his "prime minister's honeymoon", Mr Brown says he hoped to build bridges with the media.


    The last Labour government "stood up for the public interest" against News International, Mr Brown says. This included protecting the BBC, he tells MPs.

    1738: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Conservative MPs think Gordon Brown is acting like he is still PM by refusing to take questions -cries of "give way" abound around the chamber.


    Mr Brown says he will go before any inquiry to attest that there were no private deals with News International when he was prime minister. The situation was "neither cosy nor comfortable", he claims.

    1738: James Mills, a Labour Party Researcher

    tweets: MPs not in the Chamber are running through corridors to get to the Chamber to watch Brown speech. You dont see that often here... #notw #HoC


    Newspaper headlines proclaiming that "Brown killed my son", about the death of an Afghan soldier, show the relationship between Labour and News International was difficult, Mr Brown says.


    Mr Brown criticises senior Metropolitan Police officer John Yates for spending less time investigating the phone hacking scandal than dining with News International executives.


    Tory MPs complain that Mr Brown's speech is going on for too long. Speaker John Bercow, looking angry, urges that the former prime minister is treated with courtesy.

    1744: M Atkins

    email: I would like to say that the level of impolite noise in the House of Commons would remind me of a discussion in a pub. Can they not listen to pople with out all the noise and inelegant row? All I can hear is "shut UP" or "sit down". I know there are protocols but it seems cross party point scoring is far more important than the actually event going on. this is going out live across various news broadcasts. Is it any wonder that most people can not be bothered with voting and politics when you have such childish activity?


    Inspector John Yates not only failed to "ask the right questions" but ask "any of the questions", Mr Brown tells MPs.

    1746: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    A much more partisan speech by Gordon Brown than Ed Miliband which is making many Conservatives incandescent with anger.


    Mr Brown moves on to talking about allegations that his children's privacy was breached. As early as 2002 senior police told News International staff about problems, he adds. There has been a "stream of orders" to "hack and intrude", he says. He names a junior editor he claims was promoted as a result of such actions - taking full advantage of Parliamentary privilege.


    News International papers should be forced to print front-page apologies, Mr Brown says.

    1749: Iain Watson Political correspondent, BBC News

    Highly unusual to quote at length the advice, as prime minister, Gordon Brown got from the cabinet secretary But he is keen to say he was advised not launch inquiries into the press as his critics say he should have acted when in Downing Street.


    Mr Brown says David Cameron should broaden the inquiry he has announced to look into surveillance techniques which undermine civil liberties.


    To cheers, Mr Brown gives way to Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg, who accuses the former PM of having a "very moral tone" and asks former aides to Mr Brown accused of underhand behaviour in the past. Mr Brown says Conservative MPs should listen to the new evidence he is giving to the House.


    Tory MP Graham Stuart says Labour and News International figures "conspired to smear" Conservative donor Lord Ashcroft and that "nothing was done".


    Mr Brown, amid raucous scenes, says David Cameron would have been better advised not to employ ex-News of the World editor Andy Coulson as his chief of communications.


    Mr Brown, asked by a Tory MP if he has got the "tone" of his speech right, says he has and that he has tried to present the "facts".

    1755: Adam Siniarski

    emails: No wonder the kids of today have no manners when a bunch of grown ups who represent our communities can't treat each other with respect. Absolutely disgraceful from the Tories, Brown is hitting home with his comments so being rude and ignorant is nothing I didn't expect from them.


    Conservative Charlie Elphicke says he shares the "disgust" shown by Mr Brown, but adds that "nothing was done" under Labour.


    Now Gordon Brown - not himself a frequent attender in the commons chamber - baits the Conservatives over David Cameron's absence.


    Mr Brown says the "cover-up" which has taken place should never happen again. He ends his speech to applause from some Labour MPs and jeers from across the chamber.


    Tory MP and culture committee chairman John Whittingdale says the atmosphere has been "poisoned" by the revelations about News International.

    1802: Michael Crick Political Editor, Newsnight

    tweets: Brown has suddenly turned the debate highly partisan. If he carries on like this the Conservatives might think of opposing the motion!


    Rupert Murdoch will be "forever tarred" by the revelations, Mr Whittindale argues.


    The culture committee has still not had a response from Rebekah Brooks, Rupert Murdoch and his son James as to whether they will appear before it next week. The MPs will meet tomorrow morning in private to discuss their next move but still hope to have an answer from News International by then.


    Senior Labour MP Sir Gerald Kaufman says that Andy Coulson's previous claim to the culture select committee that police were paid "only within the law" by News international was an "unbelievable lie".


    Conservative John Whittingdale says it "may take years" to find out fully what has taken place at News International. The police and judicial inquiries must learn the truth, he adds. Speaker John Bercow rules that future speeches in this debate will be limited to a maximum of four minutes.


    Labour's Ben Bradshaw asks what is being done to ensure more Test cricket will be shown on terrestrial TV. Sky Sports currently owns the rights.


    Mr Bradshaw, a former Culture Secretary, accuses successor Jeremy Hunt of "bending over backwards" to help News Corp's bid for BSkyB.


    The former culture secretary (and BBC reporter) also accuses News Corp of wanting to "cut the BBC down to size".


    Jeremy Hunt responds to Ben Bradshaw's question, saying it was Ofcom's advice that the BSkyB bid should go further.


    Lib Dem Don Foster congratulates Labour leader Ed Miliband in "seeking to avoid partisan remarks". Governments of both major parties have failed to stand up to the media over the last 30 years, he informs MPs.


    Over in the Lords, they are also debating phone hacking. Chairman of the Press Complaints Commission Baroness Buscombe welcomed the establishment of an inquiry and insisted her organisation was "committed" to more effective press regulation. She insisted the PCC's work would continue - despite cross party criticism of it as ineffective and the PM's pledge to shut it down.


    Tory former Cabinet minister Lord Fowler said: "Will the inquiry be able to consider the law relating to American companies taking full control of British media companies when by the law of the United States we are prevented from doing the same and taking full control of American media companies. That seems a very unsatisfactory position and it has not always remotely been the case."


    Back in the Commons, DUP MP Sammy Wilson says the issue of press power being concentrated must be addressed.


    Mr Wilson says the public will always mistrust the news industry if one group is so large it feels it can get away with too much.


    Tory MP Phillip Lee says the ownership of internet search engines is of more concern than that of newspapers.


    Labour MP Chris Bryant says News International bullied those who criticised the BSkyB empire.


    "The hacking scandal became a political avalanche which has swept aside the News Corps bid for BSkyB as well as the News of the World. It is now heading fast for the secretive network of relationships between newspaper proprietors, leading politicians and the police," writes the BBC's Political Editor Nick Robinson in his latest blog entry.


    It is disgusting that "those slaving away in the boiler room have had to carry the can for those at the helm", with News of the World staff being laid off rather than senior News International executives, Mr Bryant says.


    If the Murdochs fail to attend next week's culture committee hearing, people will conclude that they are "abandoning Britain", Mr Bryant tells the Commons.


    Tory MP George Eustice - David Cameron's former press secretary - says it was wrong that nothing was done to improve media regulation at an earlier stage.


    Mr Eustice, who represents Camborne and Redruth, says that, if there is no real consequence for newspapers breaching the Press Complaints Commission's code, they will disobey it.


    Labour MP Steve Rotheram, who represents Liverpool Walton, says few people in the city - where many people still boycott The Sun over its coverage of the Hillsborough tragedy - will "shed any tears" for the Murdoch empire's news.


    For Labour, shadow culture secretary Ivan Lewis begins winding up the debate. The public deserve a free and confident press, he tells MPs.


    It is wrong that the reputation of the "vast majority" of journalists is being undermined by recent revelations, Mr Lewis says.


    The BBC may need reform but is "essential to democracy", Mr Lewis says.


    For the government, deputy Commons leader, Lib Dem MP David Heath, says the judicial inquiry into the media will do a "proper" job.


    The "potential systemic suborning" of some police by the media must end, Mr Heath says.


    Labour former cabinet minister Frank Dobson says the "rot set in" when Margaret Thatcher refused to direct the takeover of the Times and Sunday Times to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission.


    Mr Heath says it was "genuinely a pleasure" to hear former PM taking part in the debate. Everyone has "sympathy" for the alleged intrusions into Mr Brown's family life, he adds.


    Mr Heath says there has been a failure to "get to grips with a cancer of wrongdoing". He concludes the debate by saying there is a "unique window of opportunity" to get things right.


    Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans asks whether MPs support the motion. There are no dissenting voices, meaning it is passed.

    1901: Tom Bradby ITN's Political Editor

    blogs: It was very odd being at Westminster today. It has been a little like the moment the Khmer Rouge took over Phnomh Penh and declared Year Zero as politicians competed to denounce Rupert Murdoch and each other's dealings with him in ever more lurid and extreme terms.


    BBC business editor Robert Peston points out that although today has seen as big a setback as Rupert Murdoch has ever experienced "over the course of half a century", News Corporation remains an "enormous global empire".

    "This business isn't bust but it does face some really significant challenges," he says.

    1933: Greg Sargent The Washington Post's Plum Line blog

    blogs on the allegation that News Corporation journalists tried to hack the phones of 9/11 victims, asking: "If this latest chapter gains traction, how will New York's leading politicians respond?"


    In the US, Democratic Senators Jay Rockefeller and Barbara Boxer ask the attorney general and the Securities and Exchange Commission to launch investigations into the phone-hacking scandal.

    Separately, Democratic Senator Robert Menendez urges the attorney general to probe claims that the phones of victims of 9/11 were hacked into.


    To recap on recent events, former prime minister Gordon Brown launched a ferocious attack on News International in the House of Commons in which he accused it of "law breaking on an industrial scale".

    He told MPs the publisher had been part of a "criminal-media nexus" and many innocent people had suffered from stories written by its newspapers.

    Gordon Brown

    We're going to wrap things up here now - thanks for your contributions. It's hard to predict what will happen next, but there's likely to be widespread reaction in the British media to Gordon Brown's speech. And, looking further forward, the next notable developments might be in the US following claims that the phones of victims of 9/11 were hacked into.

    The other question is whether the problems that have beset News Corporation in the UK will spread to others parts of the media empire around the world.


Join the discussion

Comment here

The BBC may edit your comments and not all emails will be published.
Your comments may be published on any BBC media worldwide.

Terms and conditions

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.