UK

Martin McGuinness Front Pages: The Daily Mail And The Sun Opt For Very Different Front Pages For Irish Publications

'For Murdoch, all that matters is what sells best.'

22/03/2017 13:08 GMT | Updated 22/03/2017 13:14 GMT

The Daily Mail and The Sun have been accused of only caring about sales as the papers opt for two very different depictions of Martin McGuinness on their front pages and those of their sister Irish publications on Wednesday.

While the English versions of the The Mail and The Sun show the aftermath of some of the atrocities committed by the IRA, of which McGuinness was a former commander, their Irish counterparts adopted a more respectful tone.

McGuinness died on Tuesday at the age of 66.

The headline in The Sun was “unforgiven”, with a quote from the families affected by the IRA’s actions, while The Daily Mail chose two striking images of the bloodshed caused by the terrorist group.

Yet their sister publications in Ireland adopted an entirely different approach.

The Irish Sun led with “It’s not how you begin, it’s how you end”, and the Irish Daily Mail opted for a simple portrait of McGuinness as a younger man.

The startling difference in approach did not go unnoticed. 

The Daily Mail and Irish Daily Mail

The Sun and The Irish Sun

Although thousands of republicans lauded the legacy of the veteran politician, his death has drawn a very different response from many victims of the IRA, with some bereaved relatives not prepared to forgive him for his paramilitary past.

Sinn Fein said in a statement on Tuesday: “It is with deep regret and sadness that we have learnt of the death of our friend and comrade Martin McGuinness who passed away in Derry during the night.

“He will be sorely missed by all who knew him.”

But John Eaglesham, whose father - a postman and part-time soldier - was shot dead by the IRA in 1978, said: “People say about what he has done for the peace process - they seem to forget that for a very, very long time he wasn’t part of the solution he was part of the problem, in fact he was the main part of the problem.”

A Sun spokesperson said in a statement to The Huffington Post UK: “The Irish Sun and UK edition have different editors, different audiences and therefore different editorial direction.

“Newspapers ranging from The Times to the Daily Mail to The Sun print regionally-tailored editions in the regions of the UK and Ireland, and the news agenda, sport coverage and editorial line will differ accordingly.

“This once again emphasises that newspapers are written first and foremost for their readers, and anyone trying to imply it’s hypocritical simply doesn’t understand how the news works.”

HuffPost UK has approached The Daily Mail for a comment.