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Foster demands probe into NI flag gaffe on BBC Breakfast

The programme apologised for use the Irish Republic’s flag to represent Northern Ireland on Friday morning’s show.

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First Minister Arlene Foster (PA)

First Minister Arlene Foster (PA)

First Minister Arlene Foster (PA)

Stormont’s First Minister has demanded an investigation into how the wrong flag was used to represent Northern Ireland on BBC Breakfast.

Arlene Foster made the call after the flag of the Irish Republic was used in the graphic illustrating differing travel quarantine restrictions in place in the different UK regions during Friday morning’s show.

Mrs Foster’s DUP party branded the incident “disgraceful”.

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The graphic shown on BBC Breakfast that represented Northern Ireland with the flag of the Irish Republic (PA/BBC Breakfast)

The graphic shown on BBC Breakfast that represented Northern Ireland with the flag of the Irish Republic (PA/BBC Breakfast)

The graphic shown on BBC Breakfast that represented Northern Ireland with the flag of the Irish Republic (PA/BBC Breakfast)

At the end of the programme, presenter Naga Munchetty apologised for the error.

“We would like to apologise for a mistake we made earlier in the programme,” she said.

“In a graphic sequence explaining the differing travel quarantine rules around the nations of the UK we mistakenly showed the wrong flag for Northern Ireland.”

Mrs Foster welcomed the apology but urged the BBC’s new director general Tim Davie to establish what went wrong.

She tweeted: “@BBCBreakfast were right to apologise swiftly but the BBC DG needs to investigate the editorial process that allowed the inaccurate graphic to air. Very poor.”

The DUP said one of its MPs, Ian Paisley, had emailed Mr Davie following the error to demand an apology.

PA