LAST Sunday several key figures in the cultural community stood on a stage at the Scottish Baftas to plead for a ceasefire in Gaza. You would not have known that from the BBC’s coverage of the event.

Director Eilidh Munro, producer Finlay Pretsell and actor Amir El-Masry all voiced support at the ceremony for a ceasefire. None of their statements were shown by the BBC.

Munro and Pretsell won the award for Short Film and Animation – and the BBC cut their entire category. It was the only category not shown.

This decision calls into question the whole purpose of the BBC. Is its role to accurately portray the important events it chooses to cover? Or is it to excise any political statements made by those participating in those events for fear of appearing biased?

READ MORE: Ex-BBC editor intervenes in row over Gaza ceasefire calls at Scottish Baftas

I’m firmly in the former camp. There was strong support for the ceasefire voiced at the event and it was surely the BBC’s responsibility to accurately reflect that. To fail to do so flew in the face of journalistic ethics.

I’m not alone in thinking that. Award-winning journalist Tahir Imran Mian, who worked with BBC World for seven years, was also against the censorship. He said: “There is a saying in our language: The sin is bad but the excuse that you give for the sin is even worse.”

The “excuse” the BBC gave for cutting Gaza references was that its coverage of the Bafta awards ceremony was a highlights show and it did not broadcast all categories. It admitted: “Some edits were made so the content was compliant with BBC editorial guidelines on impartiality.”

It’s a strange argument to make that an award winner’s speech was banned because it breached impartiality.

Surely the protests were themselves newsworthy and should have been included on that basis alone? Nobody watching would have assumed the BBC shared any of the views stated from the stage.

Impartiality did not seem to be an issue last week when the BBC accepted an invitation from the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) to send journalists with them to the Al-Shifa Hospital (below) after it had been bombed by Israel.

The National: Wounded Palestinians lay at the al-Shifa hospital, following Israeli airstrikes, in Gaza City,

Doctors at the hospital said critically ill patients, including newborn babies, had died as a result of the bombing.

After boasting it was one of only two news operations to report from tunnels underneath the hospital the BBC went on to show Kalashnikovs, ammunition and bullet-proof vests which Israel said showed Hamas used the tunnels.

It also referred to military booklets and pamphlets, and a map that an Israeli officer said was marked with potential entry and exit routes from the hospital.

The BBC admitted that its access to the tunnels was restricted by the IDF who did not provide access to doctors or nurses to interview.

It denied its report was censored yet it clearly showed material the IDF was using to justify the hospital bombing with no means of verifying or even questioning these claims.

READ MORE: BBC journalists accuse corporation of inaccuracies in Israel-Hamas coverage

Yesterday there were reports of an Israeli attack on another hospital in Gaza. A doctor at the Indonesian Hospital said “the same scenario at Al-Shifa is expected to happen” unless a delayed truce scheduled to start yesterday morning eventually comes into force today.

Since the Al-Shifa attack, serious doubts have emerged about the truth of Israeli claims of a Hamas control base under the hospital and about the evidence presented to prove its existence. The BBC’s eyewitness report remains on its website.

What is worse for the BBC’s reputation of impartiality? – broadcasting a plea for a humanitarian ceasefire at a public cultural awards ceremony or allowing yourself to be used as what is effectively a propaganda machine for a government accused by the World Health Organisation of creating a “death zone” at a hospital providing shelter for thousands of innocent civilians?