Andrew Neil hits out at Phillip Schofield for ‘confronting’ him with ‘bizarre’ climate change question

Broadcaster said he was vehemently against Extinction Rebellion’s Remembrance Day protest

Jacob Stolworthy@Jacob_Stol
Friday 13 November 2020 12:26
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Extinction Rebellion protesters lay climate warning wreath at Cenotaph

Andrew Neill has hit out at This Morning host Philip Schofield's line of questioning during a "bizarre" appearance on the series.

The broadcaster appeared on the ITV show to talk about the Extinction Rebellion protesters who hung a wreath of poppies at the Cenotaph on Remembrance Day alongside a banner that read: “Honour their sacrifice, climate change means war.”

In a follow-up statement, the activist group highlighted a Ministry of Defence-commissioned report, published in June, which warned of the “growing recognition that climate change may aggravate existing threats to international peace and security”.

Neil criticised the protestors, stating: “I think what they did was wholly wrong as Remembrance Day is a unique day in the British calendar.

“We put politics aside and we come together to remember those who gave their lives so we could be free and they have no right to intrude in this at all.

He continued: “I’ve interviewed Extinction Rebellion on several occasions and most of what they say is total nonsense or total exaggeration.”

After Neil said there is "no evidence" that "climate change could spark wars", Schofield asked: “Are you a climate change denier?”

Neil, who has previously been called out for making errors about the topic, criticised Schofield for "confronting" him with this question on Twitter late Thursday night (12 November).

"Bizarre experience on @thismorning on ITV today," he wrote. "Asked about extinction rebellion’s protest on Remembrance Day I said it was totally inappropriate. To be confronted by Philip Schofield asking – so are you a climate change denier?

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He continued: "I replied that climate change was real and needed to be confronted. But that did not mean siding with the nonsense scaremongering of extinction rebellion."

He accused "mainstream media" of "closing down debate by stigmatising even the slightest questioning".

Neil has frequently been criticised himself for his views on the subject, and is considered by many to be a climate change denier.

On BBC’s This Week in 2018, he sparked complaints after mocking the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) for its special report on the subject.

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