Rebekah Brooks resigned as chief executive of News International today saying: "The reputation of the company we love so much, as well as the press freedoms we value so highly, are all at risk.
"As chief executive of the company, I feel a deep sense of responsibility for the people we have hurt and I want to reiterate how sorry I am for what we now know to have taken place."
She added: "My resignation makes it possible for me to have the freedom and the time to give my full cooperation to all the current and future inquiries, the police investigations and the CMS appearance."
News Corporation announced that Tom Mockridge has been appointed to the role of chief executive officer of News International. Mockridge will assume responsibility for his new role with immediate effect following the resignation of Brooks. He joins News International from Sky Italia where he has been chief executive since 2003.
- According to Press Gazette, News International will publish apologies over the phone-hacking scandal in every national newspaper this weekend. In a statement sent to staff this morning, News International chairman James Murdoch said the company will “apologise to the nation for what has happened”.
- Brooks, when editor of the Sun giving the Hugh Cudlipp Lecture, on the future of the press: "Newspaper pessimism is age old, nearly as old as some of the media commentators."
- Brooks on the Guardian phone hacking allegations in a letter to the culture, media and sport committee's chairman John Whittingdale in July 2009: "It [the Guardian] is rushing out high volumes of coverage and repeating allegations by such sources as unnamed Met officers implying that 'thousands' of individuals were the object of illegal phone hacking, an assertion that is roundly contradicted by the Met Assistant Commissioner's [John Yates] statement yesterday."
- Ivor Gaber, professor of political journalism at London's City University, commented: "The resignation of Rebekah Brooks raises two important questions. Firstly, why did she take so long to do this? Secondly, is this unrelated to her summons to appear before the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee?"
- NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said: “This is too little too late. We all know she has worked hand-in-glove with James Murdoch and they are equally culpable in terms of the cover up. This will be cold comfort to the hundreds of journalists who have lost their jobs at the News of the World.”