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May 1945: AP Paris staff gather to bid farewell to Ed Kennedy, seated centre left, after AP's general manager called him back to the US. AP Photo/Pete Carroll/PA File

News agency apologies for firing correspondent over WWII censorship

Edward Kennedy was fired after reporting the unconditional surrender of German generals to Allied forces.

THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE of The Associated Press has apologised for the agency’s decision to fire its top European correspondent in 1945 for evading military censors who tried to bottle up news of Germany’s surrender in World War II.

Edward Kennedy was dismissed by the AP after he became the first journalist to send a firsthand account of German officials surrendering unconditionally to Allied commanders at a former schoolhouse in Reims, France.

The surrender had already been reported on the radio in Europe.

Kennedy’s offence was defying officials who had ordered him and other journalists to keep it a secret for 36 hours as a condition of being allowed to witness it firsthand.

AP President and CEO Tom Curley says Kennedy was right to stand up to the censors and should have been commended, not fired.

Associated Foreign Press