Nigel Farage's LBC claims about an EU army are being investigated by OFCOM
PUBLISHED: 13:36 23 September 2019 | UPDATED: 20:54 28 September 2019
OFCOM has launched an investigation into whether Nigel Farage misled listeners about the prospect of an EU army during a dramatic clash with a caller on his LBC radio show.
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The discussion on July 16 quickly escalated when caller Chris asked: "Is it correct that the UK is perfectly able to block or veto any move towards an EU army? You know very well it is, isn't it? Yes, or no?
Farage replied: "Well, this is very interesting. No, effectively no. N.O.! Enhanced co-operation, enhanced co-operation, and so it happens anyway..."
Speaking over the caller, Farage asked Chris: "When will you stop lying?"
Farage, who was speaking in Strasbourg, added: "Everybody here now wants an EU army. And Chris, significantly, what they also want is to have an EU foreign policy without any member-state veto.
"I am saying to you this will destroy NATO, and that, I think, that is very serious."
The caller then accused the politician, who hosts a regular show on LBC, of telling "a blatant lie", as Farage insisted: "100%, we cannot veto an EU army."
Farage then ended the call.
The conversation came in the context of the imminent appointment of Ursula von der Leyen.
Following von der Leyen's appointment Farage expanded on his sentiments in a speech in the EU parliament.
WATCH: Farage slapped down in EU parliament after bizarre 'communism' rant
OFCOM is investigating if the claim made on LBC was "materially misleading" and whether due impartiality was preserved.
The watchdog is also investigating another instalment of Farage's show, which aired on September 2, about whether impartiality was preserved in a discussion about the Conservatives and the Brexit Party and any imminent general election.
An OFCOM spokesperson said: "We are investigating whether these programmes broke our rules requiring due impartiality, and whether one of the programmes included content that was materially misleading."
It will also investigate a reference made by James O'Brien on his LBC show on June 18 as to what trading agreements the UK would have in place in a no-deal Brexit scenario.
A spokeswoman said: "We are investigating whether this programme included content that was materially misleading."
The ombudsman clarifies on its website that an investigation "does not necessarily mean the broadcaster or service provider has done anything wrong".
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