Salmond in Firing Line for Association with Murdoch

The Murdoch name has become sufficiently toxic that First Minister, Alex Salmond, finds himself this morning in the firing line for having courted – among his media activities – newspaper group, News International, and its boss, Rupert Murdoch.

Reports both The Herald and The Scotsman on their front pages today, details of Salmond’s diary reveal various meetings, including – reports The Herald – a celebratory dinner with journalists from News International title, The Sun, following the SNP’s landslide victory in May’s Scottish Parliament elections.

The Scottish Sun backed the SNP ahead of the elections. Since then, its sister publication, the News of the World, has been closed down, in the wake of allegations of phone hacking against a number of its journalists.

While The Herald quotes Scottish Labour leader, Iain Gray, accusing Salmond of having “waged a four-year campaign …to seduce Rupert Murdoch and News International”, The Scotsman’s take is to report: “The revelations [come] despite an attack by Mr Salmond just days ago on the UK’s main party leaders for attending a News International garden party in June, when he said they had been ‘downing champagne and oysters’ with Mrs Brooks, who was forced to resign [as News International chief executive] over the phone hacking scandal.”