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Catherine Addison-Swan

ITV faces calls to sack Jeremy Clarkson after 'deplorable' Meghan Markle remarks

ITV has been urged to sack Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? host Jeremy Clarkson after comments he made about Meghan Markle sparked a huge backlash.

The 62-year-old presenter wrote in The Sun on Friday following the release of the final part of Meghan and Prince Harry's Netflix documentary: "I hate her. Not like I hate Nicola Sturgeon or Rose West. I hate her on a cellular level.

"At night, I'm unable to sleep as I lie there, grinding my teeth and dreaming of the day when she is made to parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain while the crowds chant, 'Shame!' and throw lumps of excrement at her," he continued.

READ MORE: Harry and Meghan to front new Netflix show this month in wake of explosive documentary

The Independent Press Standards Organisation (Ipso) has now received more than 12,000 complaints over the remarks as many voiced their outrage at Clarkson, including his own daughter as well as several famous faces including Carol Vorderman and John Bishop. The comments were branded "vile", "disgusting" and "horrifying" by readers - and calls have since mounted for the presenter to get the axe from his job.

On Monday evening, SNP member John Nicolson shared a letter written to the Chief Executive of ITV calling for Clarkson to be banned from the screen altogether. The MP wrote: "As a Member of Parliament and a journalist by profession, I have consistently defended freedom of the press. However, this has crossed a line.

"Using the names of the democratically elected First Minister of Scotland and the Duchess of Sussex alongside that of a serial killer is grotesque. Expressing a scatological, misogynistic fantasy that Meghan Markle might be assaulted with faeces is an insight into a disturbed mind, openly expressing violent hate speech.

"I do not believe that Mr Clarkson should appear on our television screens again. It would be especially inappropriate for him to be used as a presenter by any Public Service Broadcaster."

Clarkson broke his silence on Monday afternoon in the wake of the backlash, though the presenter failed to issue an apology over the remarks. Taking to Twitter, he wrote: "Oh dear. I’ve rather put my foot in it.

"In a column I wrote about Meghan, I made a clumsy reference to a scene in Game of Thrones and this has gone down badly with a great many people. I’m horrified to have caused so much hurt and I shall be more careful in future."


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