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'Observer' removes Julie Burchill transsexual piece: "We got it wrong"

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The Observer editor John Mulholland has responded to the controversy over a recent article by Julie Burchill.

The journalist wrote a piece titled 'Transsexuals should cut it out', in which she defended Suzanne Moore's essay reprinted by The New Statesman that argued society pressures women to have the body of "a Brazilian transsexual".

Julie Burchill

© Rex Features / Tom Oldham

Julie Burchill transsexual column in The Observer

© The Observer



Burchill was accused of using transphobic language, such as "a bunch of dicks in chicks' clothing", prompting The Observer to launch an inquiry.

The article has now been removed from sister paper The Guardian's website, with Mulholland stating: "We have decided to withdraw from publication the Julie Burchill comment piece 'Transsexuals should cut it out'.

"The piece was an attempt to explore contentious issues within what had become a highly-charged debate.

"The Observer is a paper which prides itself on ventilating difficult debates and airing challenging views

"On this occasion we got it wrong and in light of the hurt and offence caused I apologise and have made the decision to withdraw the piece. The Observer Readers' Editor will report on these issues at greater length."

Moore briefly returned to Twitter earlier today to address the furore.

She wrote: "I did not set out to offend and the murder of all women trans or not is clearly something I DO care about. I think readers know this?"

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