Hillsborough: Kelvin MacKenzie regrets Sun coverage

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Media captionFormer Sun editor Kelvin Mackenzie (left) admitted he should have handled the Hillsborough story differently

Former Sun editor Kelvin MacKenzie has indicated he has some regrets about the way his newspaper covered the Hillsborough disaster.

Ninety-six Liverpool fans died as a result of the tragedy at Sheffield Wednesday's stadium on 15 April 1989.

The Sun's coverage in the aftermath of the disaster claimed Liverpool fans had stolen from the dead and urinated on victims. It later apologised.

Mr MacKenzie said he would handle the story differently.

Speaking on the Daily Politics on BBC Two, he admitted he had some regrets and felt remorse about some of the things he did while editor of the Sun, from 1981 to 1994.

'Big fury'

Following a heated exchange with Labour MP for Rhondda Chris Bryant, he was asked whether the regrets included the Hillsborough coverage.

He replied: "If I could revisit Hillsborough, certainly I'd do it in a different way.

"I'd do it in the way that the other newspapers did. They basically ran the story and said big fury over... And I wish I'd done that."

The publication of the story led to a widespread boycott of the newspaper in Liverpool.

Lord Justice Taylor's inquiry into the disaster, which reported in 1990, criticised senior police officers on duty at the match for a failure of crowd control and recommended the introduction of all-seater stadiums.

Last month, News International chairman James Murdoch apologised for the coverage while giving evidence at the Leveson enquiry.

He said: "I am aware of the concerns and the hurt it caused and it is something we are very sorry for, and I am as well."

The Hillsborough Independent Panel, set up in 2009, is currently examining documents relating to the disaster. It is due to report its findings next year.

The Cabinet Office has promised to release files relating to Margaret Thatcher and the disaster by June 2012 - if they have not already been released by the panel.

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