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The ABC journalist who caused a media firestorm after dismissing reports of Jewish babies being beheaded by Hamas terrorists is now under investigation.

ABC director David Anderson, who appeared before the Communications Legislation estimates hearing on Tueday, confirmed the broadcaster had launched an internal investigation into Tom Joyner’s conduct in the Middle-East after he sent a text to several hundred other journalists across the world that read: “the story about the babies is bulls**t”.

The Israeli Defence Force later confirmed Hamas terrorists had mercilessly slaughtered and beheaded babies in their October 7 terror assault.

“I know that Mr Joyner is quite remorseful and apologetic for the words that he used,” Mr Anderson said under questioning from NSW Liberal Senator Hollie Hughes.

“He was at the time trying to do what journalists were doing, he was trying to verify what sources could back up what claims were being made at the time,” he said.

Mr Anderson said the ABC had contacted the IDF to confirm the shocking report, but the Israeli military could not verify the report at the time of contact.

Mr Anderson said Mr Joyner’s message had caused “distress” but he would have a right to “procedural fairness” in the investigation.

“My Joyner does have a right of reply here when we do look at it,” he said.

“I am sorry that it happened.”

Ms Hughes suggested in her questioning of Mr Anderson the ABC’s coverage of Israel contained an anti-Semitic bias, something Mr Anderson roundly rejected.

“I do not think the ABC is anti-Semitic in any way,” he said.

“We are impartially reporting what info we have available at the time.”

Ms Hughes blasted a 7.30 interview with Hamas terrorist Dr Basem Naim from October 17, saying she had “zero comprehension” why the ABC had platformed a prescribed terrorist and suggested the public broadcaster had “legitimised” a terrorist.

“It is not legitimising terrorism,” Mr Anderson said.

“One of their lies was that they didn’t harm Israelis.

“Through that interview, we challenged them and they admitted that they had done that.

“This is editorially justified to interview that representative given the heinous act that they did, to challenge them on the claims and the misinformation they spread.”

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By Rahul

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