British newspapers reject press regulation proposals agreed by politicians

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British newspaper publishers have rejected the government's proposals for curbing media abuses and put out a rival plan for independent self-regulation.

The Newspaper Society, which represents thousands of national and local publications, said Thursday that government rules proposed last month had no support in the industry. It argued that the plans gave politicians "an unacceptable degree of interference" in the regulation of the press.

Politicians last month said an independent watchdog would be set up with powers to issue fines and demand apologies.

The proposals were the result of heated debate over how to implement the recommendations of Justice Brian Leveson, who was given the responsibility of cleaning up an industry hurt by revelations of phone hacking and other criminality.

Many newspapers complained they had no say in the discussions.