Fox News Fires Back at ‘Misplaced’ Paris Mayor Lawsuit Threat

January 20, 2015 Updated: July 18, 2015

Fox News issued a statement on Tuesday evening in response to Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s comments that the city would sue the network after it erroneously reported on Muslim “no-go zones.”

“We empathize with the citizens of France as they go through a healing process and return to everyday life. However, we find the Mayor’s comments regarding a lawsuit misplaced,” said Fox News EVP Michael Clemente in a written statement to media outlets on Tuesday night.

Following backlash over the reports, Fox News issued several apologies for the mistakes.

For example, all day on Saturday, Fox News apologized for the inaccuracies. “To be clear, there was no formal designation of these zones in either country,” said one anchor, according to footage posted on YouTube.

“We have made some regrettable errors regarding the Muslim population in Europe, particularly in regard to England and France,” another Fox News anchor said Monday on the air. “We deeply regret the errors and apologize to any and all who may have taken offense, including the people of France.”

However, the apologies apparently didn’t satisfy Mayor Hidalgo.

We empathize with the citizens of France as they go through a healing process and return to everyday life. However, we find the Mayor’s comments regarding a lawsuit misplaced
— Fox News EVP Michael Clemente

She told CNN: “When we’re insulted, and when we’ve had an image, then I think we’ll have to sue, I think we’ll have to go to court, in order to have these words removed. The image of Paris has been prejudiced, and the honor of Paris has been prejudiced.”

The backlash was primarily focused on a Fox report that cited self-identified terrorism expert Steve Emerson.

He was quoted as saying by Fox, “Well these no go zones exist not only in France, but they exist throughout Europe. They’re sort of amorphous, they’re not contiguous necessarily, but they’re sort of safe havens and they’re places where the governments like France, Britain, Sweden, Germany don’t exercise any sovereignty.

“So you basically have zones where Shariah courts were set up, where Muslim density is very intense, where the police don’t go in, and where it’s basically a separate country almost, a country within a country.”

Emerson later issued a statement to apologize for his comments, namely to the U.K. city of Birmingham.