Murdoch attacks 'partisan' report

Rupert Murdoch has hit back after MPs branded him "not a fit person" to be in charge of a major media firm.

In a statement, News Corporation condemned the report by the Commons Culture Committee as "unjustified and highly partisan".

The highly contentious investigation into the News of the World phone-hacking scandal split the committee on party lines.

While members agreed unanimously that Mr Murdoch's media empire had misled their inquiry in a "blatant fashion", Tory MPs refused to support the report after Labour and the sole Liberal Democrat pushed through the criticism of Mr Murdoch by a vote of six to four.

Labour MP Tom Watson, who tabled the amendment, said he was disappointed that the Conservatives had been unwilling to support him.

"These people corrupted our country. They brought shame on our police force and our Parliament. They lied, they cheated, blackmailed and bullied and we should all be ashamed when we think how we cowered before them for too long," he said.

Conservative Louise Mensch said Mr Watson's insistence on putting an amendment "wildly outside the scope" of the inquiry had undermined the report's credibility.

Responding to the findings, News Corp admitted that the committee had highlighted "hard truths".

There had been "serious wrongdoing" at the News of the World, the company's response had been "too slow and too defensive", and some employees had misled the MPs in 2009.

"News Corporation regrets, however, that the Select Committee's analysis of the factual record was followed by some commentary that we, and indeed several members of the committee, consider unjustified and highly partisan," the statement went on. "These remarks divided the members along party lines."