The Prime Minister has “the most enormous personal regard” for media magnate Rupert Murdoch Downing Street has said amid reports that Gordon Brown telephoned him directly to complain about The Sun's criticism of his Government's handling of the war in Afghanistan.
The pair spoke on Tuesday at the height of a row over Mr Brown's apparent misspelling of a dead soldier's name in a hand-written letter of condolence to the victim's grieving mother Jacqui Janes, published by the newspaper alongside her accusations of disrespect.
Lord Mandelson accused The Sun of “bad taste and crude politicking”.
No.10 refused to discuss the pair's conversation, revealed in the Financial Times, and tried to play down the call’s significance.
“He has regular communications with Rupert Murdoch, as you would imagine, and he has the most enormous personal regard for Rupert Murdoch,” the Prime Minister's official spokesman said.