BBC journalist Kuenssberg to be given security guards over ‘anti-Corbyn bias’
Kuenssberg has been repeatedly threatened over her reporting on Jeremy Corbyn, considered by some to be biased against the Labour leader.
The political editor will be protected during the four-day conference in Brighton over fears she could be targeted following an online campaign of misogynistic hate against her.
The BBC ordered that Kuenssberg be given protection after an 18-month campaign of hate, the Sun on Sunday reports.
“We take the safety of our staff extremely seriously and will not leave anything to chance,” the BBC told the tabloid.
“Laura is a well-known public figure. She and her team will be covering events with big crowds where there can be hostility, so we want to ensure adequate precautions are taken.”
Allegations of bias around Kuenssberg’s work have been rife, from both the political left and right.
The political editor’s work on the shadow cabinet reshuffle in 2016 drew fire from angry left-wingers.
Labour supporters heckled and hissed at the journalist when she questioned Corbyn ahead of the Brexit referendum in June 2016.
Kuenssberg has also drawn criticism from the right-wing press in the UK over her Brexit coverage.
She has been seen with a man believed to be a former soldier hired by the BBC.
Corbyn has accused the BBC of major bias and spin on political stories.
“It’s obsessive beyond belief,” he told a TV crew last year.
Social media users are divided on the matter. Some view Kuenssberg’s security detail as an over-reaction.
Others suggested she brought the threats upon herself.
“Let's not twist ‘Laura Kuenssberg’s bodyguards’ into some tale of misogyny shall we,” said one user.
“She’s disliked because she is an unsubtle propagandist.”
“It seems there are concerns for Laura Kuenssberg’s safety,” one tweet said.
“@BBCNews are worried she might trip over the truth and still not recognize it.”
“I see Laura Kuenssberg is manufacturing a news story again,” another said.
“Needing bodyguards? At a party conference? Sod off. That’s genuinely pathetic.”
However, others were more sympathetic.
“Miserable state of affairs when the BBC feels it has to provide a reporter with security for a party conference,” one user wrote.
“A journalist should not need bodyguards at a political party conference. What is happening to this country?” another said.