BBC News Anchor Flips Middle Finger on Air, Sparking Controversy

Top BBC News host Maryam Moshiri was caught “flipping the bird” during a live television broadcast on Wednesday, December 6.

Knewz.com has learned that the incident quickly went viral, capturing the attention of netizens and audiences worldwide.

bbc news anchor flips middle finger on air, sparking controversy

Maryam Moshiri

The incident occurred as the traditional BBC countdown reached zero, transitioning to Moshiri’s live appearance.

Caught off guard, Moshiri, with a tilted head, wide eyes, and sporting a mischievous little grin, held up the unmistakable gesture for the world to see.

It took mere milliseconds for her to realize her mistake and replace the smirk with her usual newsreader expression.

“Former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson apologizes for the pain and loss suffered in the UK during the coronavirus pandemic,” Moshiri read as she discussed the top story of the day – which in this instance focused on the former top politician’s apology for his errors during the COVID pandemic.

bbc news anchor flips middle finger on air, sparking controversy

Maryam Moshiri behind her news desk showing very different hand signals. By: X/@BBCMaryam

When it became apparent that Moshiri’s faux pas did not go unnoticed, she was quick to express an apology of her own, saying:

“I’m so sorry it went out on air! It was not my intention for this to happen, and I’m sorry if I offended or upset anyone. I wasn’t ‘flipping the bird’ at viewers or even a person, really.”

“I was pretending to count down as the director was counting me down from 10-0, including the fingers to show the number. So from 10 fingers held up to one.”

Moshiri went on to explain in a post on X that “When we got to 1, I turned my finger around as a joke and did not realize that this would be caught on camera.”

bbc news anchor flips middle finger on air, sparking controversy

Maryam Moshiri is said to be one of the BBC network’s top presenters. By: X/@BBCMaryam

Social media users were quick to react.

The initial post to X was greeted with an array of memes, and although the poster @ArchRose90 felt the incident was indicative of something other than satire, comments ranged from humorous jibes to critiques of her behavior.

In response to Moshiri’s message on her X page (which now depicts a picture of her also behind her news desk, but holding up a very different hand gesture) one sympathetic commenter noted:

“Wild world we live in when you have to apologize for something like this.”

Another poster appreciated the faux pas and spoke for many when he quipped “New meme template.”

Mirroring the sentiment, @Saqib_hmed wrote: “I mean it ain’t that serious..its hilarious. I don’t think there is a need for an apology. Thanks for a meme.”

The mirth was lost on one online commenter who found the incident reminiscent of a reaction by 2022 education minister Andrea Jenkyns.

She was spotted outside the British seat of power on No. 10 Downing Street, making the same hand gesture during troubled times for the island country’s political scene, per The Guardian.

bbc news anchor flips middle finger on air, sparking controversy

The BBC has not yet made any comments on the incident. By: MEGA

Jenkyns also took to X to explain her public indiscretion, saying:

“On Thursday morning I went to Downing Street to watch the prime minister’s resignation speech. A baying mob outside the gates was insulting MPs on their way in as is sadly all too common,” Jenkyns explained.

“After receiving huge amounts of abuse from some of the people who were there over the years, and I have also had seven death threats over the last four years. Two of which have been in recent weeks and are currently being investigated by police, I had reached the end of my tether.”

“I responded and stood up for myself. Just why should anyone have to put up with this sort of treatment. I should have shown more composure but am only human,” Jenkyns concluded – and unlike Moshiri, made no apologies.

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